Comics Laureate Bobby Joseph curates a new graphic novel list for libraries

Comics Laureate Bobby Joseph has curated an incredible list of graphic novels by a diverse range of comic creators for children and general readers which is being promoted by Arts Council England and distributed to libraries across the UK.

Bobby Joseph. Photo: John Freeman
Bobby Joseph. Photo: John Freeman

Bobby’s Laureate Library Listdetailed in full here on the Lakes International Comic Art Festival’s Comics Can Change The World web site – includes works by authors such as Sabba Khan, Adam and Lisa Murphy, Bex Ollerton, Shanti Rai, David Shenton and Jamie Smart, and manga creators such as Eiichiro Oda and Hajime Isayama.

The books are, of course, also available from all good book and comic shops across the UK.

“As the Comics Laureate, my main role is to promote the art form,” says Bobby. “It is something I do not get paid for. So, therefore, anything I do is for the sheer love of the form and to do things that help and uplift creators because that is what we should be doing as a community.

“The main reason why I created the Laureate list is to give UK Comic creators a spotlight in libraries throughout the whole of the country,” he continues. “Not only does it give them more profile, but it also gives them another revenue stream to gain royalties. This also creates stronger links with comic creatives and libraries. It opens the channels up for more talks or events with UK comic talent. This means voices such as Bex Ollerton, Lucy Sullivan, Shanti Rai, David Shenton, Mark Stafford, Danny Noble, Shazleen Khan and others, are given more opportunities to promote their work.

“The choices I made with regards to titles, were made due to the diverse nature of the UK Comics readership,” he expands. “Go into Forbidden Planet or Gosh Comics, or any bookshop.

“Who’s buying comics, graphic novels and manga? Everyone! That’s who!! So, therefore, representation was important to me.

“That said, when looking at titles to include, I wanted books that illustrated great stories and great narratives that are representative of what we as the UK can offer. And hopefully, new readers can be achieved, and new bridges built between the UK comic community and libraries because of it.”

Bobby is effusive about the backing received from Arts Council England for his list, as the organisation continues to develop its support for the comics medium. ACE, which is actively looking to offer financial support to more comic projects.

ACE continues to develop its connectivity with the comics sector and has updated their Literature Information Sheet (PDF link) to better reflect their receptivity to projects which support the work of comic creators and use comics to engage audiences and readers.

“What’s great is that ACE were very hot on the idea, and were happy to facilitate it with their connected libraries,” Bobby notes. “My long-term plan is to have the Laureate list as a revolving yearly list with ACE, so hopefully we can get more UK talent on the map.”

Read the Comic Laureate Library List here in full on Comics Can Change the World

Graphic Novels by UK Comic Creators

Where available, affiliate links used here are for Bookshop.org

• Barking by Lucy Sullivan
• Catalyst by Various Artists
Forty Lies: A Work of IPSEDIXITISM by David Shenton
Lavender Clouds – Comics about Neurodivergence and Mental Health by Bex Ollerton
Lip Hook: A Tale of Rural Unease by David Hine and Mark Stafford
Mongrel by Sayra Begum
Sennen by Shanti Rai
Shame Pudding by Danny Noble
The Roles We Play by Sabba Khan
What We Don’t Talk About by Charlot Kristensen

Read the Comic Laureate Library List here in full on Comics Can Change the World

Children’s Graphic Novels

Where available, affiliate links used here are for Bookshop.org

Akissi: Tales of Mischief by Marguerite Abouet and Mathieu Sapin
Bumble and Snug and the Shy Ghost by Mark Bradley
Bunny vs Monkey: Bunny Bonanza! by Jamie Smart
• Corpse Talk: Season 1 by Adam and Lisa Murphy
• Dog Man: Twenty Thousand Fleas Under The Sea by Dav Pikey
Donny Digits: Heroes! Heists! Hot Dogs! by Woodrow Phoenix
Drawn to Change The World Graphic Novel Collection by Emma Reynolds
Juniper Mae: Knight of Tykotech City by Sarah Soh
Mexikid by Pedro Martin
• Saving Sunshine by Saadia Farugi and Shazleen Khan

Read the Comic Laureate Library List here in full on Comics Can Change the World

Manga

Where available, affiliate links used here are for Bookshop.org

• Attack on Titan Volume 1 by Hajime Isayama
Chainsaw Man, Volume 1 by Tatsuki Fujimoto
• Dandadan, Volume 1 by Yukinobu Tatsu
• Death Note Black Edition, Volume 1 – Death Note Black Edition 1 by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata
• Jujutsu Kaisen Volume 1 by Gege Akutami
• My Hero Academia, Volume 1 by Kohei Horikoshi
• Naruto (3-in-1 Edition) by Masaschi Kishimoto
One Piece (Omnibus Edition) Volume 1 by Eiichiro Oda
One Punch Man Volume 1 by Yusake Murate
Spy x Family, Volume 1 by Tatsuya Endo

Read the Comic Laureate Library List here in full on Comics Can Change the World

• Find out more about the work of the Comics Laureate here on Comics Can Change the World

• Check out former Comics Laureate Stephen L. Holland’s “Recommended Reading List” on the Lakes International Comic Art Festival site

• The Lakes International Comic Art Festival returns to Bowness-on-Windermere Friday 27th – Sunday 29th September 2024 | Ticket details here



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