An Introduction to Graphic Novels: Background information when reading Home After Dark

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Home After Dark

by David Small

Home After Dark by David Small X
Home After Dark by David Small
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  • First Published:
    Sep 2018, 416 pages
    Sep 2019, 416 pages


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Book Reviewed by:
Norah Piehl
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About this Book

An Introduction to Graphic Novels

This article relates to Home After Dark

Print Review

If David Small's Home After Dark is your first introduction to visual storytelling through book-length graphics, you're in for a treat. There is a wealth of wonderful, accessible yet profound books that can serve as a terrific introduction for new graphic novel fans. This list just scratches the surface of this fantastically rich and diverse art form - readers who want to learn more should peruse past winners of the Eisner Awards as well as any number of online "best of" lists.

MausMaus by Art Spiegelman
It would be almost unthinkable to compile any kind of list of notable graphic novels and not include this 1986 masterpiece, which paved the way for countless works to follow by retelling the atrocities of the Holocaust via a cat-and-mouse story.

Watchmen Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons
Even if you've dismissed superhero comics in the past, you might want to give Watchmen a try; this hugely influential comic book series from 1986 and 1987 was turned into a graphic novel in 1995, and turns the comics genre on its head by giving superheroes depth and vulnerabilities unheard of at the time.

Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth by Chris Ware
You might recognize Chris Ware's clean precision and seemingly sunny style from his many New Yorker covers. Just like those cartoons, which often have a surprisingly dark edge, in Jimmy Corrigan Ware creates a character whose personal history belies the brightly colored visual presentation. First published in 2000, this graphic novel is uniquely inventive with diagrams, fold-out instructions, paper cut-outs and more.

Persepolis Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi
Book-length comics are not confined to fiction, and this graphic memoir is about growing up in Iran during the Islamic revolution of 1979. Satrapi's book, published in 2007, began to show what was possible for politically inflected graphic storytelling.

American Born Chinese American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang
Also published in 2007, this outstanding novel about growing up Asian in America was the first-ever graphic novel to win the Printz Award, one of the most prestigious awards for young people's literature.

Gemma Bovery Gemma Bovery by Posy Simmonds
This work of art should appeal not only to those interested in the graphic novel art form but also to lovers of books and literature, as cartoonist Simmonds offers an intriguing novel (published in 2005) that plays with the story of Madame Bovary by Flaubert.

March: The Trilogy March: The Trilogy by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin and Nate Powell
Winner of the National Book Award for Young People in 2016, this three-volume story is about the Civil Rights Movement as remembered by Congressman John Lewis, who is a vital figure within it.

Filed under Reading Lists

Article by Norah Piehl

This "beyond the book article" relates to Home After Dark. It originally ran in September 2018 and has been updated for the September 2019 paperback edition. Go to magazine.

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