In this blend of historical and scientific perspective, Fetter-Vorm explores the race between several countries to create the Atom Bomb, starting with the theoretical exploration of splitting atoms, to the realization of the theory under the Manhattan Project. Fetter-Vorm particularly focuses on the American efforts, so there is little detail from other countries involved in the race. The beginning of the novel focuses heavily on the science behind how it's possible to split an atom and what happens on a molecular level. The historical perspective is sprinkled throughout this section, but really becomes the major focus during the second half of the book. Particular attention is given to Oppenheimer and General Leslie Groves as the leaders of the project. Fetter-Vorm also goes into quite a bit of detail about the dropping of Little Boy, the Uranium atom bomb, and Fat Man, the plutonium atom bomb, on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, respectively, and how each of the different types of atomic bombs' explosions affected the cities and people.
Illustrated by David Namisato
Sandy is a young Boy growing up in British Colombia who loves baseball. It’s one of the things he and his father enjoy together, that is when is father isn’t off providing medical treatments to folks. Sandy’s family and of Japanese decent, and they live in a thriving Japanese community in BC, who all root for the Asahi, the local baseball team who just lost the championship, but are hopeful to get it back next season. Then, the Japanese bomb Pearl Harbor, and things start getting more complicated for Sandy and his family. They have to give up some of their possessions “for safekeeping”, knowing full well they will be sold off; they have to be in their homes by sundown, which makes the father’s job much harder; and there are certain areas of port cities they are no longer allowed to live in. Soon enough, the families are transported to camps that have been set up at abandoned mining facilities.
Adapted by Ryan North, illustrated by Albert Monteys
This story starts out in World War II with a scrawny soldier, Billy Pilgrim, and three others, sneaking through Germany and trying to evade detection. There are some odd things about Billy, besides the fact that he's in the Army and has no muscle - Billy doesn't live his life entirely chronologically. He's become unstuck in time, and he periodically visits future points in his life, like after he's opened a successful optometry practice, or that one time he cheats on his wife, or when aliens from the planet Tralfamadore scoop him up in their flying saucer and place him in a zoo where they can view him like an exhibit. Billy learns much from his time amongst the aliens, like the saying "so it goes" after someone dies, or how they view time as if they are seeing a slice of the Rocky Mountains - kind of all at once. In between all of these moments, Billy is captured and center to a labor camp in Dresden - just before it is taken off the face of the map by the Allied Forces.
Illustrated by Cyril Pedrosa
In a distant kingdom that feels very much like medieval France, the king has just passed, and the coronation of his daughter, Tilda, is soon. The greedy barons want to tax peasants more and blame everything else for their poor yielding fields, but Tilda isn’t about to have her people suffer even more. The coronation doesn’t even have a chance to start when Tilda is usurped and betrayed, then thrown into exile. Flanked by her only two loyal retainers left, Tilda decides to head to the Peninsula, where there is one more loyal man left in her kingdom, one more hope for taking back her throne. Filled with intrigue, secret societies, and treasure, Tilda’s adventure is just getting started.
Illustrated by Jonathan Luna
In this fantasy series, there are several races of beings, including creatures that look like dragons, people who look like humans, and a race in between that came from the joining of human-types and dragon-types. This world is ruled over by an Empire, at the helm of which is the Eternal Empress, one of the beings closer to a dragon than a human. Two young human “workers” for the empire both begin to have visions that lead them to break out of their enslavements and find each other. When they get too close to each other, flames start shooting out of their hands, which has never happened to either before, and they coach each other through controlling this new power They decide they must escape the Empire, so they head towards the last kingdom on the planet that isn’t part of the Empire, just as the Eternal Empress sets her sights on conquering this last corner of the world.
Illustrated by Tim Foley
Dan Rather's original prose book, What Unites Us, is a collection of essays, musings and observations with lots of autobiographical details, about American history and political climate. This graphic novel adapts many of the essays from the prose version. The historical events are not told in any sort of chronological order. Instead, Rather uses his perspective on key historical moments to illustrate bigger ideologies; things like "courage", or "patriotism." Rather attempts to explain what is special about America, what brings us together as a nation, but also what has worked to separate us, especially partisan bickering and political turmoil.
Backderf's latest novel is a meticulous account of the events of May 1-4, 1970 at Kent State University. The storyline follows Jeff, Allison, Bill, and Sandy, the four students who were killed during anti-Vietnam-war, anti-military conflicts on Kent State's campus, as well as several of the wounded students and a few of the soldiers of the National Guard. Rising tensions between student protestors and National Guardsmen were stoked by sleep-deprived soldiers and commanding officers, a governor infused with law-and-order politics, and persistent student protests that were unrelenting for several days. Throughout, there are pages of exposition offering insights from Backderf's extensive research.
Illustrated by Pedro J. Colombo, colored by Aintzane Landa
This story is based on true events of the life of Francisco Boix, a prisoner of war interned at Mauthausen.
Boix is a Spaniard and a newspaper photographer and communist who is captured in France and sent to several camps before ending up at Mauthausen. For a while, Francisco works as a translator, tasked with translating the insults German soldiers hurl at the prisoners. Later, Francisco is moved up to working in the photography lab at the camp, where he discovers that the SS are meticulously documenting the deaths of prisoners, but staging them and classifying them as suicides or escape attempts. Despite the dangers to his life and the life of those in the camp, Francisco decides it is exceedingly important to get the negatives of these photos out of the camp to show the world what the Nazis were really doing in these extermination camps. After the war, Francisco participates as a witness in the Nuremberg trials, but he finds that most people cannot fathom the photos so many risked their lives to save.
Vol 1: Opening Fire, illustrated by Leandro Fernández, colored by Daniela Miwa, lettered by Jodi Wynne
Andy and her team of super soldiers are nearly immortal. Some have been alive for centuries, others, millennia. They don’t know why they haven’t died yet, despite repeated attempts to kill them, most of the time in fairly violent way. They often discover their immortality by coming back to life after being killed on the battlefield. When they start dreaming about a new girl, they have to find her or they’ll just keep dreaming about her. Andy recruits Nile Freeman, a U.S. Marine, after she returns to life from having her throat slit. After their latest job goes south and their secret gets exposed, they must go on the run and figure out how to put things back to normal. The team begins to fracture, and it’s team leader Andy’s job to figure it all out and keep the team together.
Just as it seems all hope is lost, as the Sigurdian soldiers surge on the fort, the Horned Warriors of Leren, an old foe of Sigurd, emerge from the wilds and attack the Sigurdian forces. Freya tries to recruit them as allies, but the Leren warriors’ only motivation is to cause harm to Sigurd, not to become friends with anyone. Freya realizes that Sigurd has made many enemies in its path to dominating the continent, and joining forces with them may be the only way Tyr will survive against this Goliath. Freya and her brave royal guard set out to invoke old alliances and gather enemies of Sigurd.
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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