Graphic Mundi announces four new graphic novels for later this year

Look for new work by Fabien Toulmé, Catherine Pioli, Kathleen Founds and Maureen Burdock in the fall.

Graphic Mundi, the graphic novel imprint of Penn State University Press, has announced four new graphic novels they’ll publish later this year.

The line-up includes a third Hakim’s Odyssey book from Fabien Toulmé (who was nominated for an Eisner earlier today), plus new works by Catherine Pioli, Kathleen Founds and Maureen Burdock.

The Graphic Mundi imprint, which was announced at the end of 2020, spun out of PSU Press’s Graphic Medicine line. But it’s featuring graphic novels on a broader set of topics, including health and human rights, politics, the environment, science and technology. And despite only being around for a short time, they’ve already picked up two Eisner nominations.

Here’s a rundown of the four new books:

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Dark Horse to publish S. Craig Zahler’s ‘Organisms from an Ancient Cosmos’

The novelist, musician and director of ‘Bone Tomahawk’ writes and draws his second graphic novel.

Dark Horse has announced plans to publish a graphic novel by S. Craig Zahler, the director of the movies Bone Tomahawk and Dragged Across Concrete, as well as the creator of the graphic novel Forbidden Surgeries Of The Hideous Dr. Divinus.

He’s also a novelist and the drummer for the metal band Charnel Valley, and he’s working to bring one of his novels, Hug Chickenpenny: The Panegyric of an Anomalous Child, to the screen with the help of The Jim Henson Company. So he has a lot going on creatively, but he still found time to write and draw Organisms from an Ancient Cosmos, his new graphic novel.

“My first artistic interest was illustration, and after writing eight novels, recording nine albums, and directing three movies, it was a pleasure to draw once more. In this graphic novel, which is my second, I explore morally complex characters, intimate human drama, large-scale world building, and speculative science,” Zahler said. “I began working on the piece at the very beginning of lockdown and finished more than a year later when I received my first vaccine. Creating ‘Organisms from an Ancient Cosmos’ was an incredibly gratifying experience, and I’m thrilled to have it published by Dark Horse Comics, whose books I’ve read since the eighties.”

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‘Gender Queer’ tops the ALA’s ‘Most Challenged Books of 2021’ list

Half the books on 2021’s top 10 list were targeted for including LGBTQIA+ content.

In a year that saw the highest number of book challenges in libraries and schools since the ALA began compiling data on the topic, the graphic novel Gender Queer by Maia Kobabe topped the American Library Association’s list of most challenged books for 2021.

More than 700 book challenges — which are reported attempts by citizens and parents to have books removed from their public library or a school library — were recorded by the ALA, a record number since they began sharing data and making this list in 2000. This resulted in almost 1,600 individual book challenges or removals, as some challenges were against multiple titles.

“The 729 challenges tracked by ALA represent the highest number of attempted book bans since we began compiling these lists 20 years ago,” said ALA President Patricia “Patty” Wong. “We support individual parents’ choices concerning their child’s reading and believe that parents should not have those choices dictated by others. Young people need to have access to a variety of books from which they can learn about different perspectives. So, despite this organized effort to ban books, libraries remain ready to do what we always have: make knowledge and ideas available so people are free to choose what to read.”

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Florida school district removes Telgemeier’s ‘Drama,’ 15 other books from shelves

‘Drama’ is once again at the center of school drama as the often-banned book is targeted by a conservative political group; this comes a few weeks after ‘Maus’ was banned in Tennessee.

Raina Telgemeier’s Drama, one of the most challenged books of the last decade, has been “quarantined” by a school district after a conservative political group complained it contained “obscene material.”

Polk County Public Schools removed 16 books from shelves and placed them in “quarantine” — that’s actually how they referred to it; I hope they gave it a mask — after County Citizens Defending Freedom complained that they violated two Florida statutes related to distributing obscene or harmful materials to children.

“While it is not the role of my office to approve/evaluate instructional or resource materials at that level, I do have an obligation to review any allegation that a crime is being or has been committed,” Polk County Public Schools Superintendent Frederick Heid wrote in the email to the Ledger. “It is also my obligation to provide safeguards to protect our employees. The district will be taking the following steps to ensure that we address this issue honestly, fairly, and transparently.” 

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Alex Ross will write and draw large-format ‘Fantastic Four: Full Circle’ graphic novel

Marvel teams with Abrams ComicArt for a unique project from the renowned artist.

Marvel and Abrams ComicArt will team up to present a unique project from artist/painter Alex Ross — Fantastic Four: Full Circle, a large-format hardcover graphic novel featuring Marvel’s first family.

The book will be presented in a format that mirrors the Marvel Graphic Novel line from the 1980s. It also ill include a full-color foldout poster featuring the fully painted origin of the Fantastic Four. According to Marvel, this publication also marks the launch of MarvelArts, a graphic novel collaboration between Marvel Comics and Abrams ComicArts.

“This is the Fantastic Four story I have been wanting to tell for years, and visually it is one of the greatest artistic experiments I have attempted,” Ross told Marvel.com. “I’m excited to share this work with everyone, as it unites the two great publishing forces of Marvel and Abrams ComicArts in a bold new collaboration.”

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Cornell + Yeowell combine fantasy with rom com in ‘Three Little Wishes’

Legendary Comics announces a new project about fairies, wishes and winning back your ex.

Legendary Comics revealed a new graphic novel during a panel at C2E2 today — Three Little Wishes, by writer Paul Cornell (who also revealed the news on his blog) and artist Steven Yeowell. They’ll be joined by Pippa Bowland on colors and Simon Bowland on letters.

According to the description, the fantasy rom com original graphic novel, scheduled to arrive next summer, “follows a contract lawyer, who upon discovering a fairy that grants three wishes, attempts to fix the world.”

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A third ‘Cat Kid Comic Club’ graphic novel will arrive in April

‘Cat Kid Comic Club: On Purpose,’ the third graphic novel in Dav Pilkey’s popular series, hits stores April 5.

Dav Pilkey’s Cat Kid Comic Club: Perspectives arrived in stores this week and currently sits at #6 on Amazon’s best-selling books list, but Pilkey isn’t resting on his laurels. Scholastic has announced that the third volume in the series, Cat Kid Comic Club: On Purpose, will arrive in stores next April.

The series spins out of the popular Dog Man series and features Li’l Petey, aka Cat Kid, as he teaches readers — and a bunch of baby frogs, — about making comics.

“With the Cat Kid Comic Club series, my hope is that kids find joy in reading, appreciate different ways of thinking, and find their purpose as they dream up their own stories,” Pilkey said in a press release.

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Marvel + Scholastic send Black Panther + Shuri ‘Into the Heartlands’

Roseanne A. Brown, Dika Araújo, Natacha Bustos and Claudia Aguirre present a new graphic novel starring the brother and sister duo.

Marvel and Scholastic have announced another graphic novel in their ongoing partnership, this one featuring T’Challa, the Black Panther, and his sister Shuri.

Shuri and T’Challa: Into the Heartlands will follow the Miles Morales and Ms. Marvel graphic novels that have already been released (I saw both at my kid’s book fair today, flying off shelves alongside the new Cat Kid Comic Club book). It’s by YA author Roseanne A. Brown and illustrators Dika Araújo, Natacha Bustos and Claudia Aguirre.

The story will be one of sibling rivalry, as Shuri deals with an older brother who will one day be king and an invention that goes awry, causing her mother to become sick.

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Oni Press announces ‘Silk Hills’ by Ferrier, Level + Sherron

The new graphic novel about missing persons and the Mothman legend will arrive next summer.

Oni Press will publish Silk Hills, an Appalachian horror graphic novel that plays off the legend of the Mothman by Ryan Ferrier, Brian Level, Kate Sherron and Crank!, next summer.

The graphic novel will tell the story of Beth Wills, who comes to the town of Silk Hills to find someone who doesn’t want to be found. Her search for a missing troubled youth finds her running afoul of the local drug trade, too-friendly creepers, a very sinister deer and psychoactive moth dust.

“Silk Hills was another chance to work with collaborators I adore and who, in turn, have faith in me when I say ‘Okay, but I wanna try something a little weird here,’” Sherron said. “I prefer to tell dark tales in colorful ways, especially when there’s light and life to dig out from beneath burnt-black story-skin, and bless the boys for supporting such choices from the outset.”

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IDW will release ‘Richard Stark’s Parker: The Martini Edition – Last Call’ in May

The second collection of Darwyn Cooke’s adaptations of Donald Westlake’s Parker novels will include ‘The Score’ and ‘Slayground.’

Before his untimely death in 2016, Darwyn Cooke blessed the world with a number of critically acclaimed comics and graphic novels, including four award-winning adaptations of Donald Westlake’s Parker novels. IDW will follow the release of Parker: The Martini Edition in 2011, which collected two of those graphic novels, with Parker: The Martini Edition – Last Call next May.

The second Martini Edition will collect The Score and Slayground in an oversized slipcase edition. It will also include more than 100 pieces of never-before-seen Parker art by Darwyn Cooke; a round table talk with Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips, Bruce Timm and Scott Dunbier on Parker and Cooke; and a new 17-page story by Pulp and Criminal creators Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips.

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Webtoon expands to graphic novel publishing with Webtoon Unscrolled

Former Marvel and DC exec Bobbie Chase will oversee a line of graphic novels that will bring popular Webtoon comics to print.

The popular mobile comics juggernaut Webtoon has announced plans to launch a new graphic novel imprint, Webtoon Unscrolled, that will be headed up by former DC, Marvel and Disney publishing executive Bobbie Chase.

Webtoon Unscrolled will publish print versions of their online comics, starting with the popular Tower of God by SIU and True Beauty by Yaongyi next fall.

“Webtoon has transformed the comics landscape, helping creators find new fans all over the world,” said Ken Kim, Chief Executive Officer, Webtoon Entertainment in a statement. “As the global leader in digital comics and IP, Webtoon’s storytelling technology and creators are fueling a Literary Creator Economy, ushering in a new era of publishing and entertainment. With Webtoon Unscrolled, we’ll bring some of the biggest names and undiscovered talent from Webtoon to bookshelves.”

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Lemire + Sorrentino’s ‘Bone Orchard Mythos’ will span multiple projects

The ‘Gideon Falls’ creators will launch the first graphic novel, ‘The Passageway,’ next June.

Image Comics has released more details on Bone Orchard Mythos, the project Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino teased last week.

According to the press release, the project will include multiple original graphic novels and miniseries under the Bone Orchard Mythos banner, starting with an OGN called The Passageway that’s due out next summer. It’s about a geologist sent to a remote lighthouse to investigate “a strange phenomenon.” That will be followed in the fall by a miniseries titled Ten Thousand Black Feathers and then another original graphic novel hardcover in 2023 titled Tenement

“These will be just the first few projects in The Bone Orchard Mythos,” said Lemire. “But that’s just the start. We are planning a vast mythology of horror stories that will last for years to come.”

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