Lost in the Stacks: Pick and Mix comics
Published on 17th October 2019
Welcome to the sixth entry in our blog series 'Lost in the Stacks' - recommendations by Dublin City Libraries staff exploring overlooked gems and helping you find your next read!
Our entry today comes from Marc and is an eclectic mix of some of his current comic faves, including horror-infused fairytales, university adventures and a spy thriller!
Pick and Mix Comics
Once upon a time, there was horror in children’s tales. However, the continuing 'Disney-fication' and homogenisation of fairy stories mean that children are spared such spinechilling scenes as the agonising death of Red Riding Hood’s Granny and the execution of the Big Bad Wolf at the hands of the Woodcutter.
Thankfully, Neil Gaiman is busy teaming up with the world’s greatest illustrators to reinject gore, terror, and bloody murder into our best loved folklore. If you missed his reboot of the fairy tale world with Chris Riddell, The Sleeper And The Spindle, then you simply must catch up with it.
In Snow, Glass, Apples, Gaiman teams up with Colleen Doran, whose stunning, stylised art is dedicated to the revolutionary stained glass luminary, Harry Clarke. In this retelling, Snow White is a vampire, and her stepmother lives every day in fear as those around her succumb to the insatiable hunger of the ravenous child. Fans of the macabre will revel in the creepy, gothic atmosphere, and dripping gore.
From the ridiculous to the sublime, Giant Days is possibly my favourite ongoing comic series. It’s definitely my favourite book about three girls going to the University of Sheffield. 10 volumes in and the travails of Esther, Daisy, and Susan are no less engrossing and charming. Writer John Allison had previous success with Bad Machinery but his characters have truly come to life in collaboration with artist Max Sarin.
If you want to start at the beginning of the series, then look here and skip to the next section because *spoilers ahead* In this latest episode, Daisy and Esther visit a jobs fair for graduates, Susan and her no-longer-secret boyfriend face the first challenges of living together, and Ed Gemmell is in rehabilitation after confessing his love to Esther and/or breaking both his ankles. *end spoilers* Through it all, they show us how to be good friends and better people. What more could you ask for?
I stumbled upon The Prague Coup when the Central Library comic book club was looking into French comics. After the USA and Japan, France has the biggest comic book industry in the world. Among the translated gems we found were the Death Of Stalin, Louis Undercover (which turned out to be French-Canadian), and Alejandro Jodorowsky’s Bouncer, which we’ll be reading next month. The Prague Coup turned up completely unexpectedly and immediately piqued my interest.
Graham Greene is the main character. It’s ostensibly a true story and tells of his time in post-war Vienna, researching what would become The Third Man; one of the great films of the age. Told from the perspective of Greene’s lover and fellow spy, it’s a tale of mistrust, backstabbing and all the assorted jollities one expects from the Cambridge Spies.