Best Books 2016 | Honorable Mentions

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Choosing only five top titles in each category, plus a Top Ten, is a daunting exercise, so LJ’s editors and contributors decided to up the ante.

Graphic Novels from Osborne & Fish, Debuter Radtke, and Various Spanish Cartoonists | Xpress Reviews

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An unexpected gem of a version of Peter Pan thanks to its embrace of genuine emotion and psychological gravity; a fantastic example of the graphic novel’s possibilities as a literary medium; a best-of collection, full of emotional and humorous stories

Graphic Novels from Chanoinat & Le Hénanff, Matsumoto, Milton & Auladell, Bios | Xpress Reviews

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Fans of the Elvis will relish this book; manga and graphic novel fans will reread Matsumoto’s collection for years; this retelling of Paradise Lost will be best appreciated by academic audiences; this book of biographies might make readers eager for the actual reprints of the work discussed

Graphic Novels from the Thought Bubble Festival and Wood & Co. | Xpress Reviews

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Whether excerpts of larger works or self-contained stand-alones, all of the Thought Bubble pieces are smart and compelling; Black Road presents a sinewy opening that will draw in readers looking for a Dark Ages adventure

Graphic Novel from National Book Award Winner Coates | Xpress Reviews

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Coates’s graphic novel is an entertainingly serious political thriller more than a superhero adventure; a thoughtful and complex Black Panther incarnation that draws on prior Marvel-world events

Graphic Novel from M.R. James (Ghost Stories) | Xpress Reviews

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Fans of classic horror will relish James’s stories. Even though the gore factor is low, the overall creepiness will keep you looking over your shoulder

Graphic Novels: Aaron & Co., Breathed, de Jongh, Goetzinger & Rodolphe, Greenberg | Xpress Reviews

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This Star Wars collection will fly off the shelves; Bloom County will be cherished by smart alecks everywhere; Marie Antoinette is short and sweet; Greenberg is highly recommended, especially for those who enjoy mythology and fable

Graphic Novel from Ben Katchor | Xpress Reviews

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A wonderful peek into an old yet new world, Katchor’s work pleasantly combines art and character, opening readers’ eyes and ears to the sights and sounds of this metropolis

Graphic Novels by Humphrey & Co. and Tobocman | Xpress Reviews

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The crowdsourced Bartkira is all concept and no vision; fans of social justice history, activism, and famous court cases will enjoy this brilliantly conceived graphic biography of lawyer Weinglass

Graphic Novels: Barker/Scheele, the Frouds, Gillen, Pushwagner, Rooum/Clementson, Vaughan | Xpress Reviews

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Queer is a primer on oft-complex ideas; a beautifully illustratedcompanion to the earlier work; a timely Star Warspurchase; fans of indie books and art lovers will embrace Soft City; once hotly contested revolutionary attitudes; an exciting romp through the 1980s