Graphic Novels

Graphic Novels @ HPL

Reading for the Graphic Enthusiast

Next time you’re at the library check out our Teen Graphic Novel selection. HPL’s collection contains Manga, graphic adaptations of your favorite reads, award-winning graphic novels, graphic novels based on Non-Fiction, adaptations of classical Literature, as well as an excellent selection of  comics from DC to Marvel, and beyond.

Graphic Novels are far more than merely a “comic book.” Often these books touch on sensitive teen issues, feature elaborate works of art, venture into worlds unknown, and bring you back wanting more. Some argue that because Graphic Novels feature pictures they require less thought than reading a text-only book; however, in many ways Graphic Novels are limited in what they can express because they don’t focus entirely on written word. The reader must use just as much imagination and critical thinking skills to interpret the pictures as well as the text (after all, a picture is worth a thousand words).

What’s the difference between a Manga and a Comic book?
A Manga is a Japanese form of comic, often condensed in size, featuring a more exaggerated style of art and often read in the opposite direction of American books (so from our perspective, back to front). Comics are the American style of Graphic Novel, often roughly the size of a magazine and featuring a more realistic style of art. Manga novels are usually created by only one person who both draws and writes the book while a comic is created by multiple people, with a writer, artist, director, and more. Manga’s can often run much longer than American comic books, featuring multiple volumes per series. Comics tend to have more dialogue and a slower pace than a Manga which has very little dialogue and moves much faster.

This page will feature all different types of Graphic Novels, Manga, & Comics.

From Classics To Graphics

Want to know what all the buzz is about surrounding “classic” literature, but don’t have time to read them all? Why not pick up a graphic novel adaptation from our Teen Corner and decide whether you like the book enough to read it first? Perhaps you are reading a book for school and really need a second perspective. Reading the graphic novel adaptation may help you gain a clearer understanding by incorporating pictures (just like watching a movie based on the book). Here is a list of just a few of our adapted graphic novels featuring famous works of literature.

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Hobbit the graphic novel adapted by Charles Dixon

Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde the graphic novel adapted by Jason Ho

The Odyssey by Homer

The Odyssey the graphic novel adapted by Gareth Hinds

Moby Dick by Herman Melville

Moby Dick the graphic novel adapted by Will Eisner


Beowulf the graphic novel adapted by Gareth Hinds

The Three Musketeers by Alexander Dumas

The Three Musketeers by Alexander Dumas, adapted to graphic novel by Roy Thomas

The Three Musketeers by Alexander Dumas, adapted to graphic novel by Roy Thomas

The Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare

The Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare, adapted to graphic novel by Gareth Hinds

The Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare, adapted to graphic novel by Gareth Hinds

Walden by Henry David Thoreau

The writings of Henry David Thoreau from his time at Walden, adapted to graphic novel by John Porcellino.

The writings of Henry David Thoreau from his time at Walden, adapted to graphic novel by John Porcellino.

King Lear by William Shakespeare

King Lear by William Shakespeare adapted into a graphic novel by Gareth Hinds

King Lear by William Shakespeare adapted into a graphic novel by Gareth Hinds

Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Sherlock Holmes stories, originally written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, adapted into graphic novel by The Rosebud Store

Sherlock Holmes stories, originally written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, adapted into graphic novel by The Rosebud Store

Out of the Ordinary

Famous and Obscure Graphic Novels

Neil Gaiman’s Sandman Series

Neil Gaiman’s epic mythological fantasy about Dream, the Lord of the Dreaming or the Dream World. The Sandman is one of the few graphic novels ever to be on the New York Times Bestseller list.

For an elaborate summary, visit the Neil Gaiman Website Summary

The order of the series goes as follows:

  1. Preludes & Nocturnes.
  2. The Doll’s House.
  3. Dream Country.
  4.  Season of Mists.
  5.  A Game of You.
  6.  Fables and Reflections.
  7. Brief Lives.
  8. Worlds’ End.
  9. The Kindly Ones.
  10. The Wake.

Orbiter by Warren Ellis

In the early 21st century, the space shuttle Venture has suddenly returned to Earth after disappearing ten years ago… it’s crew missing – save for the catatonic pilot – with new instrumentation, new engines, and covered in something very much like skin. And with Martian sand in the landing gear. Now a team of three specialists must discover where the Venture went, what’s been done to it and what happened to the crew. Unfortunately, most of the answers are locked up in the seemingly twisted mind of the pilot. Does he really know the truth or is he simply a demented casualty of a space mission gone wrong? Both a psychological mystery and a sweeping science fiction story,Orbiter is an original hardcover graphic novel about why we go to space… and what’s still waiting for us out there.

Burnout by Rebecca Donner

When Danni and her mom move in with her mom’s alcoholic boyfriend, Danni develops a fierce crush on Haskell, her soon-to-be stepbrother who’s a hardcore environmentalist. Desperate and confused, Danni wrestles with what she’s willing to sacrifice as she confronts first love, family secrets, and the politics of ecoterrorism – set against the lush backdrop of the Pacific Northwest.

Heavy Liquid by Paul Pope

It’s the ultimate high. Men kill for it. Governments vie to possess it. And it rests in the hands of a man known simply as “S.” It’s called Heavy Liquid – and it’s going to change the world. Written and drawn by renowned underground artist Paul Pope,  Heavy Liquid is a different kind of trip – a high-speed chase through the back alleys of the world’s seediest cities… and darkest recesses of the mind.

Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi

Persepolis is Marjane Satrapi’s wise, funny, and heartbreaking memoir of growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution. In powerful black-and-white comic strip images, Satrapi tells the story of her life in Tehran from ages six to fourteen, years that saw the overthrow of the Shah’s regime, the triumph of the Islamic Revolution, and the devastating effects of war with Iraq. The intelligent and outspoken only child of committed Marxists and the great-granddaughter of one of Iran’s last emperors, Marjane bears witness to a childhood uniquely entwined with the history of her country.

Persepolis paints an unforgettable portrait of daily life in Iran: the bewildering contradictions between home life and public life and the toll repressive regimes exact on the individual spirit. Marjane’s child’s-eye-view of dethroned emperors, state-sanctioned whippings, and heroes of the revolution allows us to learn as she does the history of this fascinating country and of her own extraordinary family. Intensely personal, profoundly political, and wholly original, Persepolis is at once a story of growing up and a reminder of the human cost of war and political repression.

If you like this, be sure to check out Persepolis 2 or Persepolis the Movie. The Movie is an animated feature, illustrated in the same style as the Graphic Novel. We own both of these items at HPL.

Mr Mendoza’s Paintbrush by Luis Alberto Urrea

Be careful growing up in the green, wet, mango-sweet village of Rosario, where corpses rise up out of the cathedral walls during floods; where vast silver mines beneath the town occasionally collapse; where a man with a paintbrush, to wit Mr. Mendoza, is the town’s self-appointed conscience. He brandishes his magic paintbrush everywhere, providing commentary to singe the hearts and souls of boys who are looking to get into trouble. And one day, he performs a painterly act which no one in Rosario ever forgets!

The Tale of One Bad Rat by Bryan Talbot

“Treading a careful line between fiction and solid research, he has created Helen – a heart-wrenchingly believable girl, mentally torn apart by the actions of her father. The story follows her through the process of coming to terms with the abuse, recapping on the past through her memories as she tries to find a place for herself in a world full of people she can’t talk to and is incapable of connecting with.”

The books of Beatrix Potter provide Helen with an escape route from her childhood hell and, as she grows up, she finds parallels between her life and that of the author. From her preference for animals (and particularly a pet rat released from the school science laboratory) to her vivid imagination, she gets inspiration and comfort from Potter’s work, finding out more about the woman behind the books as she explores deeper into the writer’s world.”

It’s a powerful tale, crafted to perfection, capable of bringing a tear to the eye and a glow to the heart. It’s not going to be everyone’s cup of tea – it’s a modern fairy tale with serious themes that aren’t all that pleasant to look upon, and it certainly can’t be categorised as escapism. But it’s an important piece of graphic fiction that any reader with a heart and a conscience will find more than worthy of their time.

-Review from

Mercury by Hope Larson

*An Eisner Award Winner

In 1859 French Hill, Novia Scotia, Josey Fraser has just met handsome Asa Curry – a man with a mysterious and traveled past. While quickly winning young Josey’s heart, Asa reveals a secret ability to locate gold on the Frasers’ farm. But there is darkness in the woods… and in Asa. In the same town one hundred and fifty years later, Tara Fraser is dealing with the aftermath of her house burning down; a house that has been in her family – and Josey’s – for generations., when Tara discovers a pendant that turns out to be much more than a simple heirloom. As Josey’s story plunges into tragedy, Tara’s emerges with the promise of gold.


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