Illustrated by Wes Craig, colored by Jason Wordie, lettered by Tom Napolitano
After their village and civilization is destroyed, Kaya is tasked by her dying uncle to take her half-brother, Jin, across the world to Monk Islands. There, he will be safe and be able to communicate with the gods and gain his promised powers. Once he comes into his own, he will be powerful enough to destroy the evil Atrian Empire and restore humanity to glory. But along the way, Kaya reunites with a childhood friend and supposed betrothed, Seth of the Lizard Riders. They’ve been tasked with killing a fierce beast, the Magron, and could use Kaya’s strength and magical arm. Jin despises the detour, but the money could bring them much needed supplies, as long as they survive the fight and aren't betrayed along the way.
Illustrated by Chris Shehan
Best friends Kenny and Ted live in a small town in Ohio in the 1980s. Ted plays on the baseball team, and Kenny is trying to hide the fact that he's gay and has a crush on his best friend. One day, they find an advertisement for wish-granting glasses in the back of an old comicbook. They think nothing more of it until the specs arrive, un-summoned. When they decide to use a wish to make the town bully disappear, they start down a dark path of wishes as they try to fix their mistake, and as Kenny tries to make life better for himself and Ted. Rarely does any wish turn out without unintended consequences, so Kenny descends into an out-of-control spiral of wishes and ramifications.
Reiji is trapped in his small town life. His brother is a shut-in who constantly berates their mother; his grandmother is suffering from dementia and is the main reason his mother is so tired; and his mom sets him up with a construction job for after high school, effectively killing any aspirations he had of leaving. One night, while out buying food, Reiji realizes that the shop clerk is actually Nagi Aoe, a famous idol singer from a band he enjoys escaping to. She asks him for a tour around town, which he gives her on the back of his bike. At one point, while stopped in a bridge overlooking the town's river, she asks Reiji if he’ll enter a suicide pact with her, similarly to the heroes in a tragic story based on the town. They wind up back at her house where she takes his virginity. Afterwards, Reiji can’t stop thinking about her, her wish to die, and whether he would be better off dead as well.
In this memoir manga, Pesayuma-san goes through their beginnings of being a manga artist, reflecting on their childhood, and grappling with their gender and sexuality. In their second job in the manga industry, Pesayuma was sexually assaulted and objectified by a male coworker, and the trauma from this incident left them emotionally scarred and vulnerable for seven years. After finding a new editor in a post Me-Too world, Pesayuma discovers that they could take legal action against their aggressor, but also that their story could be publishable. They reflect on some fundamental people from their childhood and moments that were formative in their life as they journey towards self-discovery.
illustrated by Stephanie Son
Elliot is starting his first day at a new high school in a new state, having moved from Ohio to California. His mom got a new job as a vice principal at a prestigious private school in the Silverlake neighborhood of Los Angeles. Aside from the culture shock, Elliot has been having weird visions and dreams of a creepy skeleton-looking figure hunting him. Within hours of arriving at school, he becomes adopted by the self-proclaimed weirdos of the school: five witches looking to complete their coven with him as the sixth. He’s arrived just in time for the most powerful moon in centuries. But all of them get more than they signed up for when a vengeful demon starts coming after Elliot and hurting other classmates and teachers in the process. Elliot must juggle his need for acceptance, his past trauma, his new magical powers, and his romantic feelings, all while fighting off an evil cult and their savage demons.
Elise is, for all intents and purposes, the "law" on the most elite space station full of Earth's 1% who have escaped a dying planet below. There's hardly any crime aboard, so she feels ill-equipped when there are multiple murders to investigate! Someone is going after the station's Board of Directors, and they're not just dying quietly. Each body is made into a spectacle that would disgust even the most heartless of the working-class citizens. While she's trying to solve the murders, Elise is also trying to kick her habit of taking the highly addicting, hallucinogenic substance known as "Blue". Her paranoia is heightened when it seems like she might have had a hand in one of the murders in an intoxicated stupor, but she's determined to figure out what is really happening on her station.
Hachi hates school and would rather nap all day, especially if there's a nice bit of sun to bathe in. Nothing really interests him until the transfer student shows up. Aoi is a lizard boy with his tail hidden in a sleeve, and Hachi, who is a cat boy, finds his coloring and mannerisms to be interesting and soothing. The two start hanging out after school or sneaking away to an abandoned stairwell for lunch. One day, Aoi takes the sleeve off his tail, and Hachi is transfixed. It's a beautiful, bright shade of blue! Hachi lets Aoi pet his tail too as a trade off, and both promise not to share their secret with any other students. But Hachi doesn't really know how to have a friend, and he easily gets jealous when others start to become interested in Aoi. For his part, Aoi doesn't trust predators after a terrible incident at his last school that caused him to lose part of his tail. The two learn to be vulnerable with each other and navigate their (at times) uneasy friendship
Illustrated by Elisa Romboli
In a United Kingdom that has already been ravaged by war, soldiers have magical Medium Stones that augment their deadly fighting skills. Uriel is dissatisfied with the powerful Eden Army, which uses their Medium to oppress and exploit others. She steals a Justice Light, a powerful type of medium, and absconds to join the Eclipse Rebels in the fight to bring Eden down. Uriel also has a mind for inventions and hopes her inside knowledge and creativity can bring more solutions to the Eclipse as they face a foe much larger and much more powerful than they. Along the way, Uriel has to prove herself to the rebels by not only providing them with valuable information but attuning with a stone that already has a master.
Original story by Trigger/Yoh Yoshinari, illustrated by keisuke Sato
Akko is determined to be a witch. She will follow in the footsteps of her favorite witch, Chariot, who attended Luna Nova Witchcraft Academy. The major obstacle to her attaining her hopes and dreams is that she is not magical -- yet. After a disastrous attempt to get to school that led them through a forbidden forest, Akko and her new friend Lotte make it to Luna Nova. But, going to witch school is nothing like Akko thought it would be! Classes are not as interesting as she would hope, and she hasn't mastered flying a broom. Plus, lots of other witches make fun of her for not being from a magical family. One of the instructors realizes there is tension between the new arrivals, and she matches them up into a "friendly" game of volleyball, hoping they will work out some of their rivalries.
Keiji's back with more Kaiju to kill. This time, one of his lady conquests is also on his tail, claiming he broke her heart and ruined her life with his playboy ways. While the two try to destroy each other, new and more ferocious kaiju start popping up over the city, this time with the ability to transform or change their weaknesses so they are not easily exploitable. Keiji and Elizabeth, his old flame, agree to an uneasy truce, which doesn't make the little chick, who Keiji names Chicken Little, very happy. Keiji is still laser focused on finding the kaiju who killed his sister, so Elizabeth has to resort to some trickery to get Keiji to save an entire village being enslaved by a greedy kaiju.
I've been reading manga and comicbooks for years. Now, I write reviews and other helpful things for School Librarians, teachers, parents, and students.
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