The webcomics blog about webcomics

In Case You’re Still Shopping

Some of PASTE's notable books; art copyright the respective creators/publishers.

In past years, I’ve listed out what I considered the best work of the year, and you know what? I’m not doing it this year, for a couple of reasons. One is that we’re living in a Golden Frickin’ Age of good comics, and there’s too much stuff out there to say that any list is comprehensive. The other is that so many people are already producing lists of recommended material, in as many niches as you like. Best monthlies, best capes, best original graphic novels? All out there, go look.

But I will point you to one list in particular because it’s a slice of comics near and dear to my heart — best comics for the younger readers (although everybody has their own boundaries for that — this one goes from barely independent readers to the upper teens), courtesy of Paste magazine. Don’t agree with it¹? Find another! Raina Telgemeier came up with her own list a week back, and it’s terrific.

Anyway Paste calls out a bunch of webcomic or webcomic-adjacent stories, including Fleen faves The Hidden Witch, Be Prepared, The Divided Earth, Delilah Dirk And The Pillars Of Hercules, and Margo Malloo: The Monster Mall.

It’s also got stuff I enjoyed the crap out of but haven’t written up here, like Animus (creepy as heck), the 2nd-4th Cucumber Quest books (loved ’em didn’t have time to review them when they came out), as well as Hey, Kiddo (waiting until I’m in a sufficiently bleak mood to tackle that one), and The Prince And The Dressmaker (about which I got opinions²).

And this just scratches the surface. It could have included Last Pick, or Check, Please!; Amulet: Supernova or Spill Zone: The Broken Vow; The Adventure Zone or Hermes; any/all of the Science Comics titles or Ocean Renegades. I could go on. Like I said, Golden Age.

The point being, you’re almost spoiled for choice when it comes to giving the kids in your life excellent reading material, and there’s so much more on the horizon. Find a kid you like and get ’em something good; you’ll start them on a lifelong love of comics and if you’re very lucky?

They’ll share.

Spam of the day:

Our writing services include everything that you require to transform ideas into a finalized and seamless book. and recommended by various renowned online publishers, including Google Books, Amazon, Ingram and Barnes Trusted and Noble – we take pride in our services and strive to deliver only the best.

This came in an email with the subject line , 1 Hr Left to Become a New York Times Best Selling Author, and it offends me. The quality of writing in this sample is representative of the whole, and the misrepresentation of the publishers list (there’s merchants there, and distributors, and retailers — no publishers) gets my onetime bookseller hackles up. You are very stupid, and you think that I am somehow stupider than you are.

¹ And I do have my issues with Paste‘s list, starting with the idea of ranking. What makes one book better than another? Particularly when you run the gamut from visceral horror for teens and very dark autobio through all-ages Latin American folk tales from a Hernandez Brother?

² I get it, I really do, but the more I think on it, the more I think that everybody that praises TPATD while overlooking The Witch Boy/The Hidden Witch doesn’t trust kids to get the subtleties of the story and implications in the latter, and prefers the Disney version of the former. Kids are smart, they can handle subtle. Don’t write down to them.

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