2009 Top 10 Great Graphic Novels for Teens

This week's blog post comes from the American Library Association's annual booklists. Every year, their Young Adult Library Services Association compiles a number of awesome lists full of suggested reads with a variety of themes.

2009 Top 10 Great Graphic Novels for Teens

Life Sucks Life Sucks by Jessica Abel, Gabriel Soria & Warren Pleece. This novel introduces you to Dave Marshall who is in love with a girl who doesn't know he exists and to make matters worse, he is a vampire. Life Sucks gives the whole vampiric lifestyle a second glance and makes you wonder if immortal life is all that it is cracked up to be.


Sand Chronicles Volume 1Sand Chronicles, Volumes 1-3 by Hinako Ashihara. After her parents get divorced, Ann Uekusa and her mother move from Tokyo to rural Shimane. Accustomed to the anonymity of city living, Ann can't get used to the almost overbearing kindness of the people in her mother's hometown. But when personal tragedy strikes, Ann discovers how much she needs that kindness.


Atomic RoboAtomic Robo and the Fightin' Scientists of Tesladyne by Brian Clevinger. In 1923, Nikola Tesla's career is in its twilight until he unveils a robot with automatic intelligence -- ATOMIC ROBO! After decades of dealing with all manner of weirdness, ATOMIC ROBO and the so-called ACTION SCIENTISTS of TESLADYNE became the go-to defense force against the unexplained.


Real Volume 1Real, Volume 1 and 2 by Takehiko Inoue. A motorcycle accident, bone cancer, a speeding truck crashing into a boy on a stolen bicycle--tragic, life-changing events turn the worlds of three young men upside down. Three very different personalities have only one thing in common--their passion for basketball. This story exemplifies how life can give an unexpected twist of fate but end up working out in one way or another.

Uzumaki, Volume 1 by Junki Ito

Pitch BlackPitch Black by Youme Landowne & Anthony Horton. This is a recommended read because of its honest and gritty depiction of street life in New York City. The collaboration between Landowne and Horton includes iinterviews with individuals as well as true illustrations of their surroundings.


Japan Ai: A Tall Girl's Adventure in Japan by Aimee Major Steinberger

Skim Skim by Mariko Tamaki & Jilliam Tamaki. This novel is set at an all-girls academy in Toronto where Skim, aka Kimberly Keiko Cameron, has to deal with school pressures, self-identity, and teenage love/angst. Suicide, depression, love, being gay or not, crushes, cliques of popular, manipulative peers — the whole gamut of tortured teen life is explored in this masterful graphic novel by cousins Mariko and Jillian Tamaki.


Umbrella Academy Umbrella Academy, Volume 1: Apocalypse Suite by Gerard WayGabriel Ba. In this series, you meet a family of adopted children who have supernatural powers. The group of prodigies were adopted by millionaire Reginald Hargreeves who refers to his bunch as the Umbrella Academy. Follow this series to get a dose of supernatural forces and action!


Cairo Cairo by G. Willow Wilson & M.K. Perker. Set in bustling modern-day Cairo, this magical-realism thriller interweaves the lives of a drug runner, a down-on-his-luck journalist, an American expatriate, a young activist, an Israeli soldier, and a genie as they navigate the city's streets and spiritual underworld to find a stolen hooka sought by a wrathful gangster-magician.