Three graphic novels you need to read this summer

[Katie Noble | Entertainment Editor]

Comics and graphic literature is really having a moment and there have definitely been, and continues to be, lots of exciting releases this Spring and Summer. Today I’ll be sharing my top three most-anticipated releases from the season!

 

The Divine


Asaf Hanuka, Tomer Hanuka, and Boaz Lavie (Released July 14th)*

Sometimes you read a book and you can’t help but admire a certain cinematic quality which makes it so damn easy to picture on-screen. The Divine most definitely has this undeniable quality. The story follows Mark, an explosives consultant who gets caught up in a secret government operation with one of old military friends. Travelling to an obscure South-East-Asian country called Quanlom for a demolition project sounds simple enough, but upon meeting some orphaned children on their journey, they discover that the country’s burgeoning civil war isn’t quite what it seems. As far as I know, The Divine is a standalone graphic novel and to be honest, it really does work. The story is fast-paced and gripping, and despite the short introduction, Mark comes across as a multi-faceted and intriguing character. The artwork will definitely not be to everyone’s tastes, but if you enjoy action-packed stories with hints of magic, then definitely check this one out.

 

Rat Queens, Vol. 2: The Far-Reaching Tentacles of N’yrgoth


Kurtis J. Wiebe, Roc Upchurch, and Stjepan Šejić (Released May 6th)*

I would struggle to describe Rat Queens as anything less than a kick-ass World of Warcraft-style creation, with multi-dimensional badass lady mercenaries on lots of violent monster-killing adventures. The series follows Hannah the Rockabilly Elven Mage, Violet the Hipster Dwarven Fighter, Dee the Atheist Human Cleric, and Betty the Hippy Smidgen Thief. I will note that the first volume was called ‘Sass & Sorcery’ – yep, that pretty much explains it.

In this installment, the ladies battle to save an old friend (and flame), from an ancient religious power that threatens to destroy not only their friend, but their entire city. This second volume is just as impressive as the first. You can expect loads of (beautifully illustrated) violent fight scenes, witty sweary dialogue, and lots and lots of interesting magical elements. This comic series is serious girl-power and I’m so excited to see where it goes next.

 

Lumberjanes, Vol. 1


Noelle Stevenson, Grace Ellis, and Brooke A. Allen (Released April 7th)

Now this is where things get a little fun. Lumberjanes is cute, quirky, and just a party to read. It really is reminiscent of a Cartoon Network kids’ show (in a good way), so if you’re a fan of Adventure Time, definitely give this one a go. In a way, we’re not surprised, as it’s written by the brilliant Noelle Stevenson, who has worked on Adventure Time in the past. It follows a group of girls on their adventures at ‘Miss Qiunzilla Thiskwin Penniquiqul Thistle Crumpet’s camp for hard-core lady-types’, and involves lots of mysteries, shenanigans, and good ol’ friendship. This first volume is a great introduction to the camp and the characters and although the plot seems to move just a little too fast at points, you can’t help but smile at the hilarious dialogue and adorable illustration. Follow the girls as they investigate a mysterious underground maze and feel right at home in their lovable circle of friends.

 

If you know any other graphic novels coming up that we should read, let us know in the comments or on Twitter @TridentMediaUK!

Titles denoted with an asterisk (*) were received for free in exchange for an honest review.

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Three graphic novels you need to read this summer