Guest Reviewer: Stacy A. ; Cook Korean!

COOK KOREAN! by Robin Ha
January 28, 2017

A Comic Book with Recipes
I loved Relish: My Life in the Kitchen by Lucy Knisley, which came out a few years ago, but never really expected to find another graphic novel with recipes. I was wrong. Apparently graphic novel cookbooks are now a thing.

There was a really interesting article on eater.com about it, Why Cookbooks are Looking More Like Comicbooks. They point out:

But comic cookbooks can do something for home cooks, too — make recipes less daunting and easier to follow. Cookbooks are still in demand, but many — with their overly aspirational food photography — wind up as coffee-table books for the kitchen.

An interesting point, for sure. And click through to an older article, The Golden Era of Food Comics is Happening Right Now. Also interesting.

When I heard about Cook Korean!, I knew I had to take a look at it. I don’t know a lot about Korean food. Korean BBQ restaurants are around, and kimchi is hugely popular pretty much everywhere now, so it seemed like a good time to learn. And learn I did.

Table of Contents:

Introduction
Kimchi and Pickles
Vegetable Side Dishes
Meat and Poultry
Seafood
Soups and Stews
Porridges
Noodles and Rice Cakes
Snacks and Street Foods
Cocktails and Anju
Korean Fusion

I included the introduction because it’s not your typical “here’s why I wrote this cookbook page.” Instead, it’s 20 pages or so of ingredients used in Korean cooking, the Korean refrigerator, the Korean pantry, Korean meal guide, Bap: Cooked Rice, Rice and its delicious by-products, Korea’s regions and foods and finally Dengki’s dress. In other words, lots of super useful information. With illustrations.

All the chapters are heavily illustrated, thus the graphic novel genre. I mean if you just picked it up without knowing it was a cookbook, it probably wouldn’t occur to you as you glanced through it. No, it’s not a novel, it’s cookbook/memoir and nonfiction while we usually call fiction books novels. But what I called comic books as a kid are now called graphic novels, regardless of whether or not the books contain fiction or nonfiction. My library shelves them in the nonfiction. I have noticed that some graphic novel memoirs are shelved in biographies, and I’m not sure who is making that distinction (Library of Congress? The Online Computer Library Center, better known as OCLC?) or why that distinction is being made. Congressman John Lewis just won a bunch of awards for the third book of his graphic novel trilogy memoir, March: Book Three (congrats!) which is shelved in biography. But I digress.

Other things I noticed when looking at the table of contents. I admitted up front I am pretty ignorant about Korean food. I didn’t know there were stews or porridges, for instance. Now I do. Kimchi Stew, for starters. And a Spicy Fish Stew. I learned that pine nuts are not just for pesto and are used in Pine Nut Porridge.

So kimchi. There is a little gastro pub near my house that makes killer kimchi. And by killer I mean they warn you if you try and order it that it is very hot, so I haven’t tried it. A kimchi loving friend (hi Dave!) has had it and really enjoys it. So everything I know about kimchi is that historically, it was made from cabbage in clay jars and buried in the dirt. The smell was supposedly horrific. And is very, very spicy. But after reading this book, I learned that my suppositions were correct, but there are ways to make it much more palatable for my delicate American taste. Use less Korean chili, for starters. I also learned that kimchi can be made from a variety of vegetables, not just cabbage – radish, cucumber and green onion, just to name a few. I feel kimchi educated now.

Noodles are big in Asian cooking and Korean food is no exception. The recipe for Handmade Knife Noodles is about as close to pasta as you can get. Rice cakes are called Tteok and there are dozens of different kinds, mostly eaten as snacks or dessert.

The cocktails chapter includes a lesson in Korean Drinking Culture, including the admonishment to “always pour your elder’s drink with both your hands,” to never refuse a drink from your elders and “always refill drinks for others and never refill your own drink. You must wait for others to fill it up for you.”

The recipes are all explained and illustrated so that even someone as ignorant of Korean food and customs as I am, could successfully prepare anything in this book. I loved the watercolor type paintings that illustrate each chapter title page, and the drawings throughout the book really added to my understanding of technique. It’s funny, I never really cared for illustrations in cookbooks, for instance the beloved Silver Palate Cookbook, as I much prefer photographs. But for some reason, I love the illustrations here and didn’t miss the photos at all.

Finally, I was trying to figure out how many recipes there are but it was difficult as so many have variations included. The author does mention in her acknowledgements that her mother helped with 64 of the recipes though. Always nice to acknowledge your mom!

If you are curious about Korean cuisine and culture or you love Korean food and want to try making some yourself, this is the book for you.

1/17 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

See more reviews from Stacy at BookBitch.com.

COOK KOREAN! by Robin Ha. Ten Speed Press (July 5, 2016). ISBN 978-1607748878. 176p.

Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 2 (Film)

Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 2 comes out in theaters this weekend!

Need a refresher? Check out Guardians of the Galaxy on DVD or Bluray.

Can’t get enough GotG?? See what’s available at your local library!

Avengers Assemble
Avengers Assemble
By Bendis, Brian Michael
Illustrator Bagley, Mark
2013-01 – Marvel Comics Group

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A perfect jumping-on point, featuring the cast of the summer blockbuster–but in Marvel Universe continuity! When the brand-new Zodiac rears its many heads, the Avengers must assemble to combat them. But who is behind the group’s return? None other than Thanos, the mad Titan, who has claimed Earth as his own. Collecting “Avengers Assemble” 1-8.

 

Guardians of the Galaxy Prelude
Guardians of the Galaxy Prelude
By Abnett, Dan
Illustrator Alves, Wellington
Text by (Art/Photo Books) Lanning, Andy
2014-07 – Marvel Comics Group

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Prepare for Marvel Studios’ newest big-screen blockbuster with these all-new stories taking place just before the film Who is Nebula? What tragic events forged her unbreakable allegiance to her dark lord? And how does Korath the Pursuer fit in? Then, as Gamora begins her quest for the Orb, see firsthand why she is the considered the most dangerous woman in the universe Plus, relive the Guardians’ individual debuts as Gamora and Star-Lord burst onto the scene, Drax and Iron Man take on Thanos, Rocket Raccoon meets the Hulk…and Groot tries to enslave the earth COLLECTING: Marvel’s Gua rdia ns of the Galaxy Prelude 1-2, Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Infinite Comic 1, Iron Man (1968) 55, Strange Tales (1951) 181, Incredible Hulk (1968) 271; material from Tales to Astonish (1959) 13, Marvel Previ ew 4; Handbook profiles.

 

Cosmic Avengers
Cosmic Avengers
By Marvel Comics
Illustrator McNiven, Steve
Text by (Art/Photo Books) Bendis, Brian Michael
2014-04 – Marvel Comics

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There’s a new rule in the galaxy. No one touches Earth No one But why has Earth suddenly become the most important planet in the galaxy? That’s what the Guardians of the Galaxy are going to find out Join Star-Lord, Gamora, Rocket Raccoon, Groot and the invincible Iron Man as they embark on an explosive and eye-opening adventure.

 

Guardians of the Galaxy, Volume 1
Guardians of the Galaxy, Volume 1
By Bendis, Brian Michael
Text by (Art/Photo Books) Marvel Comics
Text by (Art/Photo Books) Bendis, Brian Michael
2015-05 – Marvel Comics

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Why has Earth suddenly become the most important planet in the galaxy? The Guardians of the Galaxy plan to find out Star-Lord, Gamora, Drax, Rocket Raccoon, Groot – and the invincible Iron Man – embark on an explosive adventure The secrets they discover will rattle readers for years to come But while Earth deals with a brutal Badoon invasion, the Guardians’ fate has been decided millions of miles away Then, Heaven’s most fearsome angel comes for the Guardians And when Gamora battles the mysterious Angela, the universe hangs in the balance The Guardians find themselves at a crossroads when Thanos’ master plan takes shape. Can Angela’s power help combat INFINITY ? And will Star-Lord betray the entire universe? The cosmic blockbuster hit begins here COLLECTING: Guardians of the Galaxy 0.1, 1-10; Guardians of the Galaxy: Tomorrow ‘s Avengers 1.

 

Guardians of the Galaxy: New Guard, Volume 1: Emperor Quill
Guardians of the Galaxy: New Guard, Volume 1: Emperor Quill
By Bendis, Brian Michael
Illustrator Schiti, Valerio
2016-12 – Marvel Comics

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Peter Quill has abandoned the Guardians and his role as Star-Lord to be emperor of the Spartax Now, Rocket has grabbed the reins as team leader – backed up by Drax, Venom, Groot, Kitty Pryde and brand-new Guardian Ben Grimm, the ever-lovin’ blue-eyed Thing But what could put the team into the crosshairs of Emperor Quill and his Imperial Guard? Another old face is back, too – but will it be a welcome return for Gamora, or have circumstances changed in the eight months she has been away? When friends like these cause complications for Rocket and the gang, who needs enemies? They don’t, but they seem to attract them anyway. And the newest threat to the galaxy is a doozy. His name is Yotat the Destroyer – and he will have blood. COLLECTING: GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY 1-5.

 

Guardians of the Galaxy; Tomorrow's Avengers Volume 1
Guardians of the Galaxy; Tomorrow’s Avengers Volume 1
By Drake, Arnold
Text by (Art/Photo Books) Gerber, Steve
Text by (Art/Photo Books) Claremont, Chris
2013-01 – Marvel Comics

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Captain America, Doctor Strange, the Thing, the Hulk and other familiar faces join the star-spanning heroes in the greatest war the future ever saw Then, as the Guardians help a planet in turmoil rebuild, threats rise from two other worlds: one of them living, the other gone mad It’s cosmic action as you like it, as the Avengers of tomorrow face their baptism of fire Featuring the introduction of Nikki and the origin of Starhawk Guest-starring the Silver Surfer COLLECTING: Marvel Super Heroes (1967) 18, Marvel Two -In-One (1974) 4-5, Giant -Size Defenders 5, Defenders (1972) 26-29, Marvel Presents 3-12.

 

The Trial of Jean Grey
The Trial of Jean Grey
By Marvel Comics, Marvel Comics
Text by (Art/Photo Books) Marvel Comics
2014-06 – Marvel Comics

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The arrival of the original X-Men in the present sent shockwaves through the Marvel Universe, but we’ve only seen the effects on Earth – until now When an alien race discovers that Jean Grey, host of the destructive Phoenix Force, is back on Earth, they decide to hold her accountable for the heinous acts of Dark Phoenix Now it’s up to the spacefaring Guardians of the Galaxy to help the all-new X-Men save Jean Grey from twisted intergalactic justice A surprise ally from one character’s past comes to help, but is that enough against the most powerful army in the Universe? You won’t want to miss the first encounter between two of the biggest franchises in the Marvel Universe. COLLECTING: Guardians of the Galaxy 11-13, All -New X-Men 22-24.

 

Rocket Raccoon, Volume 1: A Chasing Tale
Rocket Raccoon, Volume 1: A Chasing Tale
By Young, Skottie
Illustrator Parker, Jake
2015-03 – Marvel Comics

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Rocket Raccoon has been a hero to the weak, a champion of good, a heartthrob to many intergalactic females…but his high-flying life of adventure may be a thing of the past when he’s framed for murder – and the authorities aren’t the only one on his tail (Get it? Tail?) The real killer is an imposter who seems to be one step ahead of Rocket at every turn…now, it’s up to our hero and his best pal Groot to find the truth With Macho Gomez and the Ex-Terminators tracking him, can Rocket make it out alive and clear his name? Superstar creator Skottie Young brings his A-game as writer and artist on the series we’ve been waiting decades for. Because really, this is the only Guardian of the Galaxy you actually care about, right? COLLECTING: Rocket Raccoon 1-6.

 

Legendary Star-Lord, Volume 1: Face It, I Rule
Legendary Star-Lord, Volume 1: Face It, I Rule
By Humphries, Sam
Illustrator Medina, Paco
Illustrator Williams, Freddie
2015-02 – Marvel Comics

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Exploding from the pages of Guardians of the Galaxy Peter Quill battles the Badoon, fights to save an orphanage, and still finds time to flirt with the X-Men’s Kitty Pryde – all in a day’s work for the legendary Star-Lord But when Peter is captured by a bounty hunter with a strange connection to his past, can the two make amends before he’s fed to a giant alien? Sharing a Badoon jail cell with a criminal and a child isn’t exactly Peter’s idea of a good time…luckily, he’s got an ace named Kitty up his sleeve. But Star-Lord soon encounters the all-powerful Titan responsible for so much mayhem in his life: Thanos It’s the battle to end all battles, but can Star-Lord possibly get out alive? COLLECTING: Legendary Star-Lord 1-5.

Drawn to Manga February 2017

case study of vanitas

The Case Study of Vanitas, Volume 1
By Mochizuki, Jun
2016-12 – Yen Press

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Rumors revolving around The Book of Vanitas, a clockwork grimoire of dubious reputation, draw Noe, a young vampire in search of a friend’s salvation, to Paris. What awaits him in the City of Flowers, however, is not long hours treading the pavement or rifling through dusty bookshops in search of the tome. Instead, his quarry comes to him…in the arms of a man claiming to be a vampire doctor Thrust into a conflict that threatens the peace between humans and vampires, will Noe cast in his lot with the curious and slightly unbalanced Vanitas and his quest to save vampirekind?”

 

The Demon Prince of Momochi House

The Demon Prince of Momochi House, Volume 1
By Shouoto, Aya
2015-07 – Viz Media

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On her sixteenth birthday, orphan Himari Momochi inherits her ancestral estate that she’s never seen. Momochi House exists on the barrier between the human and spiritual realms, and Himari is meant to act as guardian between the two worlds. But on the day she moves in, she finds three handsome squatters already living in the house, and one seems to have already taken over her role.

 

Hatsune Miku Mikubon

Hatsune Miku: Mikubon
By Ontama
2016-10 – Dark Horse Manga

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Hatsune Miku and her friends Rin, Len, and Luka are not only back in manga…they’re back to school, enrolling at the St. Diva Academy for Vocaloids They’re going to give it their best at St. Diva, as a wonderland of friendship, determination, and even love unfolds But can they stay out of trouble, especially when the mad professor of the Hachune Miku Research Lab is nearby…?

Previously, Dark Horse Comics’ Unofficial Hatsune Mix, landed at #1 on the New York Times Manga Top 10 list and sold out of bookstores across the nation

Hot Facts: Over 170,000 music videos have been uploaded to YouTube using Miku as the singer. This popular Vocaloid (a singing voice synthesizer) has appeared in ads from Toyota USA, Domino’s, the Late Show with David Letterman and even opened for Lady Gaga

 

Nekogahara: Stray Cat Samurai

Nekogahara: Stray Cat Samurai 1
By Takei, Hiroyuki
2016-10 – Kodansha Comics

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In medieval Japan, it’s a hard life for a stray cat. Every day is filled with struggles and prejudice, from oppression by fellow cats working for cruel masters to extortion by catnip druglords. But being a stray also means incredible pride and independence. The wandering samurai Norachiyo has no master, though he still wears the telltale bell of a cat who has a “person.” This rogue warrior travels across Japan, protecting the weak and cutting down those who have forgotten the virtues of being a stray – all with unrivaled swordsmanship. Although Norachiyo leaves little trace but his fearsome reputation, this enigmatic warrior has made plenty of enemies who are more than willing to get their claws on his head. Will Norachiyo’s past catch up with him, or can he spend his nine lives in freedom?

 

Tohyo Game

Tohyo Game, Volume 1: One Black Ballot to You
By G. O./Chihiro
2016-10 – Yen Press

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The class popularity contest was supposed to be for fun…but now the unpopular ones are dying grisly deaths. The classroom has become a horrific struggle for survival. Someone is keeping the game going, but who? Can anyone survive the game and expose the truth?

 

Guest Reviewer: Stacy A. ; March book 3

MARCH: BOOK THREE by John Lewis
February 2, 2017


Click to view in PBCLS catalog

Co-author Andrew Aydin
Illustrator Nate Powell

I don’t read a lot of graphic novels – in fact, it feels like I start every one of my reviews this way!

This book is part of a series of biographical graphic novels written by John Lewis about his life and career. Book Three starts in the early 1960’s.

What brought this book to my attention was the awards. It won the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature. Then at the American Library Association Midwinter Conference last month, the following awards were announced:

The Coretta Scott King (Author) Book Award, which recognizes an African American author of a book for kids

The Michael L. Printz Award for excellence in young-adult literature

The Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Award

The YALSA Award for excellence in young-adult nonfiction

This was record setting – no other book has ever won 4 awards from ALA. So I wanted to read it. Luckily, my library had a copy on the shelf.

From the publisher:

Welcome to the stunning conclusion of the award-winning and best-selling MARCH trilogy. Congressman John Lewis, an American icon and one ofthe key figures of the civil rights movement, joins co-writer Andrew Aydin and artist Nate Powell to bring the lessons of history to vivid life for a new generation, urgently relevant for today’s world.
By the fall of 1963, the Civil Rights Movement has penetrated deep into the American consciousness, and as chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, John Lewis is guiding the tip of the spear. Through relentless direct action, SNCC continues to force the nation to confront its own blatant injustice, but for every step forward, the danger grows more intense: Jim Crow strikes back through legal tricks, intimidation, violence, and death. The only hope for lasting change is to give voice to the millions of Americans silenced by voter suppression: “One Man, One Vote.”

To carry out their nonviolent revolution, Lewis and an army of young activists launch a series of innovative campaigns, including the Freedom Vote, Mississippi Freedom Summer, and an all-out battle for the soul of the Democratic Party waged live on national television. With these new struggles come new allies, new opponents, and an unpredictable new president who might be both at once. But fractures within the movement are deepening … even as 25-year-old John Lewis prepares to risk everything in a historic showdown high above the Alabama river, in a town called Selma.

I loved this book. I must admit I pretty much cried my way through it, it is not an easy read. But what a story! Congressman Lewis has has lived an amazing life, and continues his work for civil rights to this day.

The illustrations by Nate Powell are all in black & white, and are viscerally stunning. Bombings, speeches, and arrests are somehow brought to life but the violence is never over the top or gratuitous. Malcolm X, Martin Luther King, Jr. and other leaders of the civil rights movement, not to mention President Johnson and Robert Kennedy, are easily recognized.

This book is a testament to what civil disobedience can accomplish, and feels very timely right now. This is a truly inspirational read, and I highly recommend it.

2/17 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

See more reviews from Stacy at BookBitch.com.

MARCH: BOOK THREE by John Lewis. Top Shelf Productions; First Edition edition (August 2, 2016). ISBN 978-1501115677. 320p.

NYT Top 10 Graphic Books Best Sellers 12/18: GN Paperbacks

New York Times paperback graphic novel best sellers from 12/18. O.M.G. It’s a Raina Telgemeier EXTRAVAGANZA! The titles link to books in the PBCLS catalog. Check ’em out!

1 GHOSTS, by Raina Telgemeier. (Scholastic) Two sisters discover that their quiet coastal town is haunted by ghosts, but are they something to fear, or embrace?

2 BABY-SITTERS CLUB GRAPHIX: BOX SET, by Ann M. Martin and Raina Telgemeier. (Scholastic) This collection contains the first four volumes of the all–color adaptation of the popular book series.

3 DRAMA, by Raina Telgemeier. (Scholastic) Callie becomes the stage manager for her middle school’s production of “Moon Over Mississippi.”

4 THE WALKING DEAD COMPENDIUM, VOL. 1, by Robert Kirkman and others. (Image Comics) This collected edition reprints the first 48 issues of “The Walking Dead.”

5 THE WALKING DEAD COMPENDIUM, VOL. 3, by Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard. (Image Comics) This large collected edition includes issues 97 through 144, where Rick and his group of survivors make contact with other communities.

6 THE WALKING DEAD COMPENDIUM, VOL. 2, by Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard. (Image Comics) In this collected edition, of issues 49-96, Rick and his group of survivors try to stay alive — with zombies, and some humans, against them.

7 SMILE, by Raina Telgemeier. (Scholastic) Raina experiences braces, boy troubles and other plagues of the sixth grade.

8 SISTERS, by Raina Telgemeier. (Scholastic) Raina is stuck in the back seat between her younger brother and sister for a weeklong road trip in this family memoir.

9 MARCH TRILOGY, by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin and Nate Powell. (Top Shelf Productions) All three volumes of Representative John Lewis’s memoir of the civil rights movement are collected here.

10 THE BABY-SITTERS CLUB GRAPHIX: KRISTY’S GREAT IDEA, by Ann M. Martin and Raina Telgemeier. (Scholastic) Four friends start a babysitting business in this all-color adaptation of the first book in the series.

Drawn to Manga December 2016

In celebration of “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” opening this weekend, we have a special Star Wars edition of Drawn to Manga!

A New Hope Manga

Star Wars: A New Hope: Manga Volume 1
[illustrations by] Hisao Tamaki ; [adapted from an original script by George Lucas ; edited by David Land]
1998 – Dark Horse Comics

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The complete screenplay of the original movie adapted as a manga!

 

The Empire Strikes Back

Star wars: the empire strikes back
[illustration by] Toshiki Kudo ; [based on an original story by George Lucas ; adapted from a screenplay by Leigh Brackett and Lawrence Kasdan]
1999 – Dark Horse Comics

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A manga adaptation of the movie “Star Wars Episode 5: The Empire Strikes Back”.

 

Return of the Jedi

Star wars: Return of the Jedi
[based on an original script by George Lucas ; adapted from an original screenplay by Lawrence Kasdan and George Lucas ; illustration by Shin-Ichi Hiromoto.]
1999 – Dark Horse Comics

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A manga adaptation of the movie “Star Wars Episode 6: Return of the Jedi”.

 

Check out our catalog for more Star Wars titles.

Graphic Novel Best Sellers 12/4/16

These are the New York Times Manga Best Sellers for the week of December 4, 2016. As always, the links will take you to the Palm Beach County Library System web catalog.

1
DANTDM: TRAYAURUS AND THE ENCHANTED CRYSTAL, by Dan Middleton, Doreen Mulryan and Mike Love. (HarperCollins) Dr. Trayaurus and Dan must prevent five powerful crystals from falling into the hands of their arch–nemesis, Denton.

2
BATMAN: THE KILLING JOKE, by Alan Moore and Brian Bolland. (DC Comics) This critically acclaimed story from 1988 offers a possible origin for the Joker.

3
FIGHT CLUB 2, by Chuck Palahniuk and Cameron Stewart. (Dark Horse) In this sequel to Palahniuk’s 1996 novel, Tyler Durden re-emerges to create mayhem once again.

4
THE BEST AMERICAN COMICS 2016, edited by Roz Chast and Bill Kartalopoulos. (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) This collection features contributions from Chris Ware, Cece Bell and others.

5
HILO BOOK 2: SAVING THE WHOLE WIDE WORLD, by Judd Winick. (Random House) Bizarre creatures are appearing all over town, and only Hilo, DJ and Gina can send them back to where they came from.

6
ROLLING BLACKOUTS: DISPATCHES FROM TURKEY, SYRIA AND IRAQ, by Sarah Glidden. (Drawn & Quarterly) The author travels with a team of journalists as they interview civilians and refugees from various war zones.

7
NATHAN HALE’S HAZARDOUS TALES: ALAMO ALL–STARS, by Nathan Hale. (Abrams) The Texas Revolution is the latest subject in this nonfiction series.

8
SNOW WHITE, by Matt Phelan. (Candlewick) The story of Snow White is reimagined here as a noir tale set in Manhattan during the Great Depression.

9
MOEBIUS LIBRARY: THE WORLD OF EDENA, by Jean (Moebius) Giraud. (Dark Horse) Two interstellar repairmen investigate a space station where the crew has completely vanished.

10
ANGEL CATBIRD, VOL. 1, by Margaret Atwood and Johnnie Christmas. (Dark Horse) When a scientist holding an experimental serum is hit by a car, his body mutates and takes on the physical characteristics of both a cat and an owl.