Graphic Novels 101

American Splendor

Harvey Pekar

An important graphic novel that brought the genre to the attention of adults, it tells the author's story. Pekar works at the V.A. clinic in Cleveland and spends his free time writing comics. American Splendor collects his observations on the most mundane details of life as well as his relationships.


Craig Thompson

A tale of first love and adolescent complexities, Blankets tells the story of the author and his relationship with Raina. Thompson meets Raina at a religious camp, and from there the two fall in love as Thompson battles his parents over his artistic talents.


Contract with God Trilogy: life on Dropsie Avenue

Will Eisner

One of the masterpieces of the genre, A Contract With God tells a variety of stories about the men and women who inhabit a tenement section in early 20th century New York.


David B.

In Epileptic, David B tells the story of his family's struggle with his brother's epilepsy and their unsuccessful attempts to provide him with a stable life.

Ethel and Ernest

Raymond Briggs

The story of the author's parents, from their first encounter in 1928 London, through their marriage and the rapidly shifting modern world, to their final days.

Fax from Sarajevo:a story of survival

Joe Kubert

The author and his family are trapped as war rages in Sarajavo. Their only means of communication with the outside world is a fax machine.

The Fixer

Joe Sacco

Set in a post-war Sarajevo circa 1995, The Fixer tells the story of a reporter and his relationship with a fixer named Neven. For money Neven leads Sacco through Sarajevo to help him locate dramatic stories to chronicle.

Ghost World

Daniel Clowes

Enid and Rebecca have just graduated high school and must learn to adjust to the increasingly complex world of adulthood. As the strain builds on their friendship, they find themselves heading in different directions.

My Friend Dahmer

Derf Backderf

While a graphic novel about Jeffrey Dahmer may sound disconcerting, this memoir written by his former classmate examines the superficiality of high school, as well as the true, complex character of Dahmer.

The Rabbi's Cat

Joann Sfar

Gaining the ability to speak after swallowing a parakeet, the rabbi's cat uses his newfound talent to tell lies, the consequences of which lead to being banned from contact with the rabbi's daughter and an education in the Torah, despite his preference for the Kabbalah and his desire for a bar mitvah.