Monday, December 22, 2014

Favorite Kids Comics of 2014

In Episode 24, Jack and Amanda discuss their favorite comics of 2014. Produced by Donna Mettier of Technical Services. 
Recommended Reads:
  • Batgirl by Cameron Stewart
  • Multiversity by Grant Morrison
Favorite Kids Comics of 2014 discussion:

Monday, December 15, 2014

Favorite Adult Comics of 2014

In Episode 23, Jack and Amanda discuss their favorite adult comics of 2014. Produced by Donna Mettier of MCFL's Technical Services...

Recommended Reads:
Favorite Adult Comics of 2014 discussion:

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Favorite Teen Comics of 2014

Recommended Reads:
  • Alex + Ada by Jonathan Luna
  • Multiversity by Grant Morrison
Favorite Teen Comics, 2014: 

Monday, December 1, 2014

Episode 21: CLA Panel with Gene Yange, Mariko Tamaki ad Nick Dragotta

Jack and Amanda hosted an amazing panel at the California Library Association Annual Conference on Sunday, November 9, 2014 and recorded it for your listening pleasure; which is produced by Donna Mettier of Technical Services.
We were thrilled to host three incredible graphic novel creators: 

Monday, October 13, 2014

Alternative Press Expo and Faith Erin Hicks Interview

In Episode 20, Jack and Amanda attend the Alternative Press Expo (APE) where Jack interviews Eisner-Award winning comic book author Faith Erin Hicks of The Adventures of Superhero GirlThe Last of Us, the upcoming series The Nameless City and an untitled collaboration with Rainbow Rowell.
AND, Jack and Amanda will be running a In the Library with a Comic Book panel at the California Library Association Annual Conference on Sunday, November 9 at the Oakland Convention Center with Gene Luen Yang of The Shadow Hero,  Mariko Tamaki of This One Summer and Nick Dragotta of HowToons and we want to hear from YOU. So send us your questions to or via Twitter using the hashtags #CLABeTheChange #comics.
The In the Library with a Comic Book podcast is produced by Donna Mettier of the Marin County Free Library.

Monday, August 18, 2014

San Diego Comic-Con Wrap-Up: Spotlight on Scholastic Graphix

In Episode 17, Jack and Amanda cover comics at San Diego Comic-Con; with a focus on Scholastic’s Graphix imprint and two of their authors:
Interview with Kazu Kibuishi of the Amulet series.
Interview with Raina Telgemeier of SmileDrama and Sisters

Monday, August 11, 2014

San Diego Comic-Con Wrap-Up: Spotlight on First Second Books

In Episode 16, Jack and Amanda cover comics at San Diego Comic-Con; particularly one of our favorite publisher’s: First Second Books and two of their authors:
Interview with Gina Gagliano of First Second Books.
Interview with Paul Pope of Battling Boy and The Rise of Aurora West.
Interview with Cecil Castellucci of Odd Duck.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Interviews with Jimmy Gownley, Mike Maihack and Chris Butcher

Interview with Jimmy Gownley of The Dumbest Idea Ever! and Amelia Rules!
Interview with Mike Maihack of Cleopatra in Space.
Interview with Chris Butcher of Udon Entertainment and Toronto Comic Arts Fest.
Check out our additional ALA coverage with Episode 14: Interviews with Gill & Hale, plus our ALA wrap-up
Jack, Amanda and our esteemed producer, Donna Mettier, will be at San Diego Comic-Con this week. We’ll have some limited conference swag, so if you see us at the con, be sure to stop us and say hi. 
Jack will be presenting Publishers Weekly: Creating Great Graphic Novel Events in Libraries on Sunday from 4:00-5:00 at Room 32AB.
AND we’ll be podcasting live, so stay tuned for lots of exciting coverage!

    Wednesday, June 25, 2014

    In Episode 13, Jack and Amanda interview John Bultena of UC Merced and his use of comics in the college classroom and also discuss the Big Wow Comicfest.

    Recommended Reads
    • Starlight by Mark Millar
    • Young Avengers, Vol. 3: Mic-Drop at the Edge of Time and Space  by Kieron Gillen
    • Southern Bastards by Jason Aaron
    • Scalped by Jason Aaron
    Coverage of the Big Wow Comicfest; including our interview with Greg Rucka and Michael Lark of Lazarus.

    Comics in the classroom:

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014

    Episode 12: Big Wow ComicFest

    In Episode 12, Jack and Amanda cover the Big Wow Comicsfest in San Jose CA on Sunday, May, 18, 2014:

    Interview with Greg Rucka and Michael Lark of Lazarus.

    Interview with Andrew C. Robinson of The Fifth Beatle: The Brian Epstein Story.

    Monday, May 19, 2014

    Episode 11: Listener Mail Bag

    In episode 11, Jack and Amanda answer listener questions:

    Recommended Reads:
    • Bad Houses by Sara Ryan
    • She-Hulk by Charles Soule
    Listener Question #1 from Courtney Saldana of Ontario Public Library: What are the best horror comics for teens ages 13-18?:
    • The Lost Boy by Greg Ruth 
    • Locke & Key by Joe Hill
    • Ape Sapian, Vol. 2: The Devil Does Not Jest and Other Stories by Mike Mignola
    • Hellboy by Mike Mignolla
    • Hoax Hunters, Vol. 3: The Book of Mothman by Michael Moreci
    • Justice League Dark by Peter Milligan
    • Batman by Scott Synder
    • Severed by Scott Synder
    • The Wake by Scott Synder
    Listener Question #2: What graphic novel recommendations do you have for a 12-year-old boy from Genesis Hansen of Mission Viejo Library?:
    Battling Boy by Paul Pope
    Monster on the Hill by Rob Harrell
    Rust series by Royden Lepp
    Adventure Time series by Ryan North
    March: Book One by Congressman John Lewis
    Cardboard by Doug TenNapel
    Vader and Son by Jeffrey Brown
    The Lost Boy by Greg Ruth

    Question #3: Bitch Magazine’s Three New Comics Starring Great Female Characters… are these any good from Lauren?:
    Rat Queens by Kurtis J. Wiebe
    Rocket Girl by Brandon Montclare
    Pretty Deadly by Kelly Sue DeConnick

    Wednesday, May 14, 2014

    Podcast #10: Fantastic Ladies Comics Club

    In episode 10, Jack and Amanda the Eisner nominations and Amanda interviews members of the Fantastic Ladies Comics Club in Berkeley, CA:
    Recommended Reads:
    • Lumberjanes by Noelle Stevenson 
    • This One Summer by Jillian Tamaki
    • Skim by Mariko Tamaki
    • Emiko Superstar by Mariko Tamaki
    In the News:
    Fantastic Ladies Comics Club of Fantastic Comics in Berkeley,CA

    Wednesday, April 30, 2014

    Podcast #9: Emerald City Comic-Con, plus Gender and Sexism in Comics

    In episode 9, Jack and Amanda discuss Emerald City Comic-Con as well as gender and sexism issues in comics:

    Recommended Reads:
    • Andre the Giant: Life and Legend by Box Brown
    • Gotham Central by Ed Brubaker and Greg Rucka
    Emerald City Comic-Con
    Gender and Sexism in Comics Resources:
    Interview with Kurtis J. Wiebe and Roc Upchurch of Rat Queens
    Interview with Royden Lepp of Rust

    Tuesday, April 1, 2014

    Podcast #8: Adult Literacy and Comics

    In Episode 8, Jack and Amanda welcome special guest, Morgan Rose Pershing of Santa Clara City Library:

    Jack, Amanda and Morgan discuss:

    Recommended Reads:
    • Rat Queens by Kurtis J. Wiebe
    • Sex Criminals by Matt Fraction
    • Peter Panzerfaust by Kurtis J. Wiebe
    • Velvet by Ed Brubaker
    • Winter Solider by Ed Brubaker
    • Y: The Last Man by Brian K. Vaughan
    • Saga by Brian K. Vaughan
    Comics: Our Origin Stories; Related Reads
    Adult Literacy and Comics with Morgan Rose Pershing & Related Reads:
    Morgan also mentions The Learner conference.
    And check out Mrogan’s original presentation on her project: MP3 and the Eureka! Leadership Institute.

    Wednesday, March 12, 2014

    Monday, February 17, 2014

    Podcast #6: Interview with Gene Yang & Lark Pein of Boxers & Saints

    Recommended Reads:
    • Captain America: Winter Soldier by Ed Brubaker
    • Manhattan Projects, Volume 3: Building! by Jonathan Hickman
    • Miracleman by Alan Moore
    Interview with Gene Luen Yang and Lark Pien of Boxers & Saints

    Friday, February 14, 2014

    Podcast #5: Image Expo 2014 Wrap-Up

    Image Expo 2014:
    • Special In the Library with a Comic Book discount: inthelibrary30 for 30% off digital comics on for DRM-free issues.
    • Robert Kirkman with Paul AzacetaOutcast
    • Joe Keatinge with Leila del DucaShutter
    • Joshua WilliamsonNailbiter
    • Kelly Sue DeConnickBitch Planet
    • Kyle HiggensC.O.W.L.: Chicago Organized Workers League
    • Kieron Gillen and James McKelvieThe Wicked and the Divine
    • Chris BurnhamNameless with Grant Morrison
    • Bill WillinghamRestoration with Barry Kitson
    • Scott SnyderWytches with Jock
    • Ed BrubakerThe Fade Out with Sean Phillips
    The After Party:
    Interview with Nick Dragotta of East of West and Howtoons.

    Thursday, January 23, 2014

    Podcast #4: Free Comic Book Day Planning

    In Episode Four, Jack and Amanda discuss:
    Recommended Reads:
    • The Sandman by Neil Gaiman
    • Vol. 8: World’s End
    • Vol. 9: The Kindly Ones
    • Vol. 10: The Wake
    • Parker, Volume 4: Slayground by  Darwyn Cooke
    Free Comic Book Day (FCBD)
    • Annual event the first Saturday of May: May 3, 2014
    • Special single issue comics published exclusively for FCBD at very low cost
    • Order due at the end of January via Diamond

    How to order books for Free Comic Book Day:
    • Work with your local comic shop
    • Titles available at
    • Your shop will have a list of everything that is available AND HOW MUCH IT COSTS
    • Most cost between 25 and 45 cents per comic
    • Orders are due mid to late January
    • There are 57 titles and you WILL NOT want them all

    • KIDS:
    • Archie
    • Avatar/Lil Hellboy by Balthazar and Franco from Superman Family Adventures, and GENE YANG!
    • Kaboom Summer Blast (feat. Adventure Time, Hero BearPeanuts)
    • Spongebob Squarepants includes James Kochalka!
    • Scrooge; reprints of classic comics
    • Rocket Raccoon (Marvel is billing this as “all-ages, with a cover by the amazing Skottie Young… your mileage may vary.)
    • Graphix Spotlight: “The Dumbest Idea Ever” (The Amelia Rules creator tells the true story of his life as a teenage comic artist!)
    • Teen Titans — always fun!
    • Top Shelf Kids Club (promises an extended preview of the beautiful looking Maddy Kettle as well as a new story from the world of Monster on the Hill, one of our faves of 2013, plus more! — Maybe Owly?!)
    • Archaia (always do beautiful hardcover books, will have new Mouse Guard andRust stories plus Labyrinth!)
    • Special Shout-out: Comic Book Legal Defense Fund’s Raising a Reader

    • TEENS:
    • Bongo Free-For-All (Simpsons)
    • Guardians of the Galaxy (Promises a new story by Brian Michael Bendis and the BRILLIANT Sara Pichelli!)
    • Atomic Robo!! 
    • Courtney Crumrin 
    • Hip Hop Family Tree by Ed Piskor
    • Les Miserables — as manga. 
    • Street Fighter — these comics are gorgeous, should appeal to video game fans
    • The Tick!
    • ADULT:
    • Uber, from Avatar by Keiron Gillen — warning!  Will be very violent and probably offensive.
    • Same with 2000 AD
    • V Wars
    • Sherwood TX — has a Boondock Saints backup story?!
    • Shigeru Mizuki’s History of Japan

    • Bleeding Cool — News, feature on Spider Man 2 movie, intro to collecting and essential titles.
    • Overstreet’s Comic Book Marketplace — price guide
    • CBLDF’s Defend Comics!

    • How to run your event
    • REVIEW all the books first!
    • Seperate the kid, teen, and adult books
    • Set a limit on how many books each person can take and stick to it
    • Be available to talk about the books
    • Ask what their favorite comics are!
    • Good to pair with other events; including crafts,  author visits, minicon and comics swap.

    Special Announcement:
    In the Library with a Comic Book has partnered with Infopeople, a fantastic organization that supports and trains California libraries and staff; including the Eureka! Leadership Institute. You can now follow our podcast on the Infopeople blog and on their iTunes channel

    Podcast #3: 25th Anniversary of The Sandman

    In Episode 3, Jack and Amanda discuss: 
    Recommended comics: 
    • Wild Children and Zero by Ales Kot
    • Locke and Key by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodrguez
    • Sandman Overture by Neil Gaiman and J.H. Williams III
    25th Anniversary of The Sandman: What you need to know
    • One of the first things that Gaiman wrote; really built his name
    • Ran from 1989 to 1996
    • First Vertigo book, a DC imprint
    • World Fantasy Award Winner (and only comic to win ever)
    • Ten volumes, which should be read in order
    • If you just want a taste, read Dream Country and Fables and Reflections — both comprised of standalone shorts
    • Bay Area peeps: Check out the Cartoon Art Museum’s Grains of Sand: 25 Years of Sandman through March 16, 2014
    • And check your local library for free museum passes via Discover and Go.
    Listener Question from Scott Bauer of Marin County Free Library:
    “What comic are you reading now that has more “strange goodness” than Manhattan Projects?”
    • Punk Rock Jesus by Sean Murphey
    • Atomic Robo by Scott Wegener
    • Lazarus by Greg Rucka
    • Pax Romana by Jonathan Hickman

    Podcast #2: CLA Wrap-Up

    In our long-awaited second episode, Jack and Amanda discuss:
    Recommended comics:
    • Tune by Derek Kirk Kim and Les McClaine
    • Trillium by Jeff Lemire
    Banned Comics
    California Library Association (CLA) Wrap-Up
    Looking forward to in 2014:
    • Sandman Overture by Neil Gaiman and JH Williams III
    • Locke and Key by Joe Hill
    • Seconds by Bryan Lee O’Malley

    Podcast #1: Best Comics of 2013

    In the Library with a Comic Book, Episode 1:

    In our debut episode, Jack and Amanda discuss some of their favorite titles of 2013 in preparation for the California Library Association’s Conference session; Comic Book Petting Zoo: The Best Graphic Novels of 2013
    Baltazar, Art (auth. and illus.) and Franco (auth. and illus.). Superman Family Adventures, vol. 1.  DC Comics, 2013.  128p.  978-1401240509.
    An incredibly lighthearted take on Superman and his compatriots Superboy, Supergirl, and Krypto the Superdog!  With goofy plots, punny gags, and bright, clear art, this book is a perfect antidote to the unrelenting grimness of the recent “Man of Steel” movie.  Appropriate for readers of all ages.
    Whitley, Jeremy (auth.) and Emily Martin (illus.). Princeless. Action Lab Entertainment. 2012-present. 2 volumes, ongoing.
    Princess Adrienne  was locked in a tower to await a princely rescue. However, she grew tired of waiting and disinterested in being rescued so, with her guardian dragon Sparky at her side, Adrienne saves herself and vows to rescue her sisters from a similar fate and fight for their freedom. Along the way, she picks up some proper gear and a best friend in blacksmith Bedelia. This fantastic adventure turns comics and fantasy tropes on their sides while spotlighting female heroes and a predominantly African-American cast. This engaging all ages title is hard to find, but worth spending the extra time to seek out.
    Book 1: Save Yourself. 2012. 116p. 978-1450798945.
    Book 2: Get Over Yourself. 2013. 100p. 978-0985965242.
    Lepp, Royden. Rust.  Archaia Press.  2011-present.  2 volumes, ongoing.
    In gorgeous sepia-toned art, this series tells the story of a family and their struggling farm, the mysterious young man (who is actually a robot) who comes to stay with them, and the dangerous secrets that follow him. Lepp does a wonderful job creating a believable family dynamic, but it’s the action where this book really shines.  It is impeccably paced, full of cool, steampunk-esque robot designs, and carefully utilizes digital blurring effects that give everything a sense of incredible speed.  Readers of the first volume, Visitor in the Field (2011. 192p. 978-1936393275), will be clamoring for the second, Secrets of the Cell (2012. 200p. 978-1936393589) and the upcoming third.
    Fraction, Matt (auth.) with David Aja (illus.) and various other illustrators. Hawkeye.  Marvel Comics, 2013-present. 2 volumes, ongoing.
    As a member of the Avengers, non-superpowered bow expert Hawkeye holds his own fighting alongside the likes of Captain America, Thor, and Iron Man.  When he’s off-duty, however, his life tends to be a bit more mundane… at least until he runs afoul of the Russian mob and puts the residents of his Brooklyn apartment building in harm’s way.  Author Fraction’s dialogue crackles with funny asides and misunderstandings (people regularly mishear our hero’s name as “Hawkguy”) which serve to strip the overblown grandeur out of the superhero genre.  And David Aja’s art is a revelation — flat and iconographic, miraculously balancing experimental layouts with blistering action.  Easily the best (and most fun!) superhero book of the year.
    Vol. 1: My Life as a Weapon.  2013.  136p.  978-0785165620.
    Vol. 2: Little Hits.  2013.  136p.  978-0785165637.
    Hicks, Faith Eric. The Adventures of Superhero Girl. Dark Horse, 2013. 112p. 978-1616550844.
    What’s a superhero to do with her powers in a low-crime city? Not even her near-invulnerability can save Superhero Girl from a mundane lifestyle, complete with laundry mishaps that shrink her cape! Hicks focuses her art in tight and colorful grids, leading to concise storytelling. Her deadpan sense of humor is evident throughout, and fans of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s Scott Pilgrim series will particularly enjoy this title.
    Cliff, Tony. Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant. First Second, 2013. 176p. 978-1596438132.
    Delilah Dirk is a force to be reckoned with: consider her the 19th-Century’s Indiana Jones, minus the academics but plus a flying boat. Selim is a mild-mannered Turkish lieutenant with a penchant for making a fantastic cup of tea. Together, they form an unlikely partnership that leads them on swashbuckling, globetrotting adventures. Cliff’s jewel-toned coloring enhances his vibrant art while infusing his storytelling with quiet moments and humorous touches. This is a refreshing comics for adults: not full of salacious content or foul language, but featuring grown-up characters with grown-up concerns.  It’s also tons of fun!
    Modan, Rutu.  The Property.  Drawn and Quarterly, 2013.  232p.  978-1770461154.
    A young Israeli woman accompanies her grandmother to Poland to see about recovering a building the family owned before they had to flee the country during World War II.  However, it turns out that grandmother has more personal reasons for making the trip.  Through the story, author/illustrator Modan explores the different ways that the long shadow of the Holocaust hangs over several generations of Jews, and pokes gentle, knowing fun at Jewish life and culture.  Romantic, moving, and surprising, this book deserves a spot on the shelf with other great comics about the legacy of war, such as Art Spiegelman’s Maus and Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis. Very highly recommended.