Illustrated by Meaghan Carter, letters by Joamette Gill
Ash and his new friends from the Pride Club stumble upon a spell that transports them to the world of Koretris. What Ash believed to be a novel written by his absent mother turned out to be an entire world filled with magical creatures. Koretris is a haven for girls, so how did Ash get here? It turns out that Koretris is in trouble - threatened by The Scourge - and the citizens hope that Ash has the same magical gifts as his mother. The friends must save the queen and Koretris, and Ash must embrace his true self if he is to save everyone.
Vol 1: Quest to be the best, illustrated by Selina Espiritu, Kelly Fitzpatrick
Quin is a sophomore trying to stay out of trouble in New Orleans. After some of the horrific events of his life, including living through Hurricane Katrina ravage his city, Quin just wants to build the ultimate security system to keep his family safe from as many harms as he can think of. His crush is involved in community activism, and he becomes inspired to help his community. He’s also trying to dodge bullies, mostly so they don’t find out his secret - a meteor shower that ravaged the city after the hurricane gave Quin and many others super powers. Quin is indestructible, at least as far as he knows. A recent spike in crime has Quin working with the other enhanced heroes he’s only ever read about. Quin acts fast to save his neighborhood and his family from the evil machinations of a criminal mastermind.
Hudi's always had health problems, stemming from the removal of a lung when he was really young. His health concerns are compounded by his weight, and his doctor advices his parents to get him into sports. But, Hudi would much rather tell jokes and make people laugh than run or diet. Enter Chunky, Hudi’s imaginary mascot, here to cheer on Hudi as he tries out several sports: baseball, where he can only get on base if he's struck by the ball; soccer, where he has some success using his large stature in the role of goalie; swimming, which he really enjoyed until he hurt his thumb and can't get it wet; and football, where the aggression of the sport clashes with Hudi's jovial nature. Complicating things is a strained relationship with his father, who is extremely athletic.
Thirteen-year-old Tiến reads fairy tales to his mother, Helen, to help her practice her English as she works as a seamstress. Woven through the fairy tales are memories Helen has of immigrating with her husband. The fairy tales are variations on the story of Cinderella. The first is about a maiden named Alera who is promised to the Old Man in the Sea to repay her father’s debts. She demands three impossibly beautiful dresses as payment, then escapes his clutches after receiving them. She wakes up on a distant shore and finds a new family in the kitchens of a palace. The kind prince has a ball for his birthday, and Alera wears one of her beautiful dresses. Of course, she catches the eye of the prince.
In between reading stories Tiến attends school and tries to navigate his crush on one of his best friends, Julian. His other best friend, Claire, encourages Tiến to tell Julian and his family that he is gay, but Tiến can’t find the words to express it in Vietnamese in order to tell his parents. Outside pressures make Tiến feel ashamed of his feelings, so will he ever find the courage to tell his mother?
Odessa is another entry in a dotted landscape of post-apocalyptic stories. In it, a world-destroying earthquake ravages California and most of the Western United States. There are rumors that anything East of the Mississippi River is relatively untouched. For her seventeenth birthday, Virginia receives a package from her mother, who left the family eight years ago. The package sparks a fierce need in Ginny to set out and find her mother. While her father would much rather leave it all in the past, he begrudgingly understands Ginny's need for answers will take her on this journey. Ginny sets out on the dangerous journey south into the gang-torn California Straight, with some unwanted taggers-on as well. Ginny's two younger brothers, Wes and Harry, decide that she doesn't get to be the only one who wants to know what happened to their mother. The three undertake a perilous journey full of scavenging, biker gangs, jinxed-up cannibals, and plenty of scoundrels.
Effie is dropped on her aunt's doorstep in the middle of the night after her mother passes away, and at first, the two can't stand each other. Selimene believes there has to be some sort of mistake, that an old lady like her can't possibly look after a young child. Selimene's housemate, Carlota, warms to Effie instantly, and tries to make her comfortable. Effie starts school and makes some new friends, and eventually she and Selimene begin to get along. There is something strange about Selimene and Carlota, who claim to be herbalists and acupuncturists. Effie finally gets the full picture about her aunt's strange life when her magical powers begin to awaken, and Selimene and Carlota reveal they are witches! The three must cure a mysterious curse that is affecting one of Effie's idols, singer Tily Shoo, who is nothing like Effie imagined!
Adapted by Damian Duffy, illustrated by John Jennings
Lauren is a teenager living in a walled-in community in the middle of a dystopian LA basin. Society has collapsed, and the outside world is full of scavengers, prostitutes, drug addicts, murderers, and violent criminals. Police could come and investigate, but it costs money. Lauren also “suffers” from hypersensitivity - she can feel the pain, or pleasure, of others. After a night of unrest forces Lauren from her home, she decides to travel north where water isn’t as expensive and there might be some work. She also plans on founding a community dedicated to Earthseed, her belief in a God as Change, amongst other ideologies. Along the road, Lauren picks up strangers who travel together for safety, but may one day believe in Earthseed.
Adapted by Damian Duffy, illustrated by John Jennings
Dana and her husband Kevin are unpacking into their new home in 1970s Los Angeles. Suddenly, she is inexplicably transported to pre-Civil War south and saves a young boy who is drowning in a river. She returns to her home shortly after and has no way of explaining to Kevin why she is soaking wet. A short while later, she is transported again to the boy's bedroom, where he is setting fire to his drapes. Through talking with the boy, she realizes that he is part of her ancestry, as the slave owner who fathered her great-grandmother. Dana is transported back and forth several times, with Kevin hurriedly coming with her on one occasion. They realize that Dana is taken back any time Rufus' life is in danger, and she is returned home when her life is in danger. Through many trips to Rufus' plantation and discussion with slaves and slave owners, Dana becomes a part of life, with all the horrors that slavery possess. She is beaten on several occasions, nurses other beaten slaves back to health, helps Rufus in obtaining the slave woman he desires, and tries to teach the children how to read.
Vol 1, If I Only Had a Heart: illustrated by Drew Zucker
Canto is a charming fantasy that is 1 part Labyrinth, 1 part Wizard of Oz, and 2 parts entertaining hero's journey. In this story, Canto is part of a race of beings enslaved by another race to continuously chop down fuel for the mighty furnaces. Canto's people are bereft of their hearts as babies so that they cannot feel. In their place, they are given a clock that winds down to their inevitable deaths. However, Canto finds himself falling in love with another of his kind. She gets injured, and the only way to save her is to undertake a journey to recover her stolen heart. Canto makes friends on his journey who help him come face to face with the Shrouded Man, the being at the center of the enslavement of the world.
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