I hope you’re doing well and you’re having a nice day. Today I want to share with you some of my favorite graphic novels of all time. I admit I only pick up graphic novels occasionally, so I’m far from being an expert on the subject. Still, I have read a few that I loved and that’s what I’m bringing you today.
I tried my best to include different styles of art, so you’ll find not only your typical comic book, but I also included a manga I love and a creepier version of a comic. Also, don’t be surprised if you don’t find in this list superhero books – it’s not my cup of tea!
Okay, let’s get into the list already!
1. Thornhill by Pam Smy
“Thornhill” by Pam Smy is a graphic novel on a new level of creepy… and of course, I enjoyed every second of it!
There are so many great things about this book: the artwork is incredible, the story is mysterious and intriguing, the diary format, the creepiness of it all, the gothic elements, the heavy atmosphere… everything! I think this book is very well put together and was very entertaining.
Definitely worth checking out if you like paranormal, scary books.
Parallel plotlines, one told in text and one in art, inform each other as a young girl unravels the mystery of a ghost next door.
Mary is an orphan at the Thornhill Institute for Children at the very moment that it’s closing down for good. But when a bully goes too far, Mary’s revenge will have a lasting effect on the bully, on Mary, and on Thornhill itself.
Years later, Ella moves to a new town where she has a perfect view of the dilapidated, abandoned Thornhill Institute. Determined to befriend the mysterious, evasive girl she sees there, Ella resolves to unravel Thornhill’s history and uncover its secrets.
Ella’s story is told through striking, bold art; Mary’s is told through diary entries. Each informs the other until the two eventually intersect to reveal the truth behind Thornhill’s shadowy past, once and for all. Strikingly told and masterfully illustrated, Pam Smy bends genres and expectations alike.
2. Pumpkinheads by Rainbow Rowell
Next on the list we have “Pumpkinheads” by Rainbow Rowell. If you never read this, I’m telling you: you are missing out. I strongly recommend reading this book near the Fall time because the reading experience is magical!
This graphic novel has a very immersive atmosphere, not only for the fun story with a Fall festival, but also with the artwork. The warm Fall colors and art details bring the reading experience to the next level.
It’s a very fun read and like I said, I highly recommend picking this one up when the weather is starting to get cooler!
Deja and Josiah are seasonal best friends.
Every autumn, all through high school, they’ve worked together at the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world. (Not many people know that the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world is in Omaha, Nebraska, but it definitely is.) They say good-bye every Halloween, and they’re reunited every September 1.
But this Halloween is different—Josiah and Deja are finally seniors, and this is their last season at the pumpkin patch. Their last shift together. Their last good-bye.
Josiah’s ready to spend the whole night feeling melancholy about it. Deja isn’t ready to let him. She’s got a plan: What if—instead of moping and the usual slinging lima beans down at the Succotash Hut—they went out with a bang? They could see all the sights! Taste all the snacks! And Josiah could finally talk to that cute girl he’s been mooning over for three years…
What if their last shift was an adventure?
3. Eat, and Love Yourself by Sweeney Boo
Another great graphic novel that I highly recommend is “Eat, and Love Yourself” by Sweeney Boo. I got this book randomly as an arc from the publisher and I ended up loving it and recommending it to everyone I know!
The story is kind of heartbreaking. In this book we follow our main character Mindy, and we get to see her struggles with body image, depression and eating disorders.
As someone who has struggled with being overweight most of my life, this book touched me. Fortunately I didn’t struggle with eating disorders like the main character does, but I definitely identified myself with Mindy in a lot of ways.
It’s a book with a serious message, so if you are considering picking this up, please keep in mind that there are trigger warnings for eating disorders, body dysmorphia, depression and body shaming.
It may seem like a negative book, but it’s not. It talks a lot about self-acceptance and self-love, so I honestly think this is such an important book for young readers! It is very touching, personal, relatable and will probably make you cry. Definitely worth it!
A story about Mindy, a woman living with an eating disorder who has to learn how to love herself again.
In pursuit of the perfect body, Mindy buys the low-fat diet products and the glossy magazines which promise the secret to losing weight. One night, while perusing the aisles of the neighborhood convenience store for a midnight snack, she finds a new product. A chocolate bar called “Eat and Love Yourself”. On a whim, Mindy buys the curious candy, not knowing that with every piece of chocolate she eats, she will be brought back to a specific moment of her past — helping her to look at herself honestly, learn to love her body the way it is, and accepting love. Perhaps, she will even realize that her long lost high school best friend, Elliot, was more than just a friend…
4. Card Captor Sakura by CLAMP
From all of the books that I’m sharing today, this one has a very special place in my heart. Not only is it one of my favorite graphic novels of all time, but it’s also one of my favorite book series of all time. I’m talking about the amazing manga series “Card Captor Sakura” by CLAMP.
I can’t even express how much I love this series. I watched the anime version of Cardcaptor Sakura when I was younger and it easily became my favorite anime of all time. And after rewatching the series on Netflix, I decided to read the manga. Oh, and a fun fact: this was my first time reading manga!
I could ramble forever on why I love this series so much, but in a nutshell: the manga is full of a lot of my favorite tropes. There is a strong female heroine who is just a regular girl just trying to do her best; there is a slow burn cute romance that started from rivalry; there are a lot of references to yummy food and cakes; there are so many real friendships; there are special, inspiring outfits handmade just to catch the cards; the innocence of it all… just everything!
Whether you’re used to reading manga or not, I highly recommend this series. It’s absolute perfection!
Sakura Kinomoto was just your average 4th grader—loved P.E., hated math. Until… One day, while looking through her father’s library, Sakura found The Clow, an enchanted book designed to hold a set of magical Clow Cards. But when Sakura opened the book, it was empty. Talk about disasters!! Kerberos, the Creature of the Seal, emerged from the cover of the book and told Sakura the cards must be returned to the book. “If the cards aren’t in the book, they come to Life and do evil!” Kero formed a contract with Sakura making her a Cardcaptor. And together with Kero and best friend Tomoyo, Sakura embarked on a mystical journey to capture all the Clow Cards before they wreak chaos and destruction.
5. Heartstopper by Alice Oseman
The next one I want to share with you is the popular series “Heartstopper” by Alice Oseman! Is it really a surprise that this series is here? Absolutely not!
Before picking up the first volume, I saw this series everywhere! And I admit I was a little skeptical to read it because I thought this was probably overhyped on social media. I’m glad to say I was completely wrong!
This is one of the sweetest, cutest romances I have ever read – and that’s saying a lot! Nick and Charlie are adorable and deserve all the hype. Also, the artwork is stunning and complements the story beautifully!
If you pick anything from this list, make it this one! I highly recommend it.
Charlie, a highly-strung, openly gay over-thinker, and Nick, a cheerful, soft-hearted rugby player, meet at a British all-boys grammar school. Friendship blooms quickly, but could there be something more…?
Charlie Spring is in Year 10 at Truham Grammar School for Boys. The past year hasn’t been too great, but at least he’s not being bullied anymore. Nick Nelson is in Year 11 and on the school rugby team. He’s heard a little about Charlie – the kid who was outed last year and bullied for a few months – but he’s never had the opportunity to talk to him.
They quickly become friends, and soon Charlie is falling hard for Nick, even though he doesn’t think he has a chance. But love works in surprising ways, and sometimes good things are waiting just around the corner…
And there you have it friends, those were five of my favorite graphic novels! I’m still fairly new to the world of graphic novels, so I’m still exploring and finding new books. If you have any recs for me, let me know in the comments – I would appreciate it very much!
Once again, thank you for taking the time to read this post! I hope you liked what I had to share with you today. I’ll see you in the next post 🙂