One Writer’s Journey

April 19, 2019

Excellence in Graphic Literature Awards: Finalists Announced

Filed under: Uncategorized — suebe @ 1:16 am

Pop Culture Classroom just announced the finalists for the Excellence in Graphic Literature Awards.  Haven’t heard of this one before?  This is only the second year for the award. It was established to help the public become more aware of graphic literature as a legitimate form of literature as well as specific quality titles.

Finalists: Best in Children’s Graphic Literature


  • Dog Man: Lord of the Fleas (Dog Man #5) by Dav Pilkey (Graphix)
  • Dragon Slayer: Folktales from Latin America by Jaime Hernandez (TOON Graphics)
  • Petals by Cris Peter & Gustavo Borges (KaBOOM!)
  • Small Things by Mel Tregonning (Pajama Press)
  • Tiger vs. Nightmare by Emily Tetri (First Second)


  • Little Tails Under the Sea by Frédéric Brrémaud, Federico Bertolucci (Lion Forge)
  • Mushroom Fan Club by Elise Gravel (Enfant)
  • Snails Are Just My Speed by Kevin McCloskey (TOON Books).  I really enjoyed this one because it broadened my idea of what a graphic novel is.
  • The Eye That Never Sleeps: How Detective Pinkerton Saved President Lincoln by Marissa Moss and Jeremy Holmes(Abrams)
  • We Are All Me: TOON Level 1 by Jordan Crane (TOON Books)

Finalists: Best in Middle-Grade Graphic Literature


  • Be Prepared by Vera Brosgol (First Second)
  • Cardboard Kingdom by Chad Sell (Knopf Books for Young Readers)
  • Crush by Svetlana Chmakova (Yen Press)
  • Hidden Witch by Molly Knox Ostertag (Graphix)
  • Sheets by Brenna Thummler (Lion Forge)


  • Action Presidents #1: George Washington! by Fred Van Lente and Ryan Dunlavey (Harper Collins)
  • Lafayette! (Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales #8): A Revolutionary War Tale by Nathan Hale (Harry N. Abrams/Amulet)
  • Ocean Renegades! (Earth Before Us #2): Journey through the Paleozoic Era by Abby Howard (Harry N Abrams/Amulet)
  • Stinky Cecil in Mudslide Mayhem! by Paige Braddock (Andrews McMeel Publishing)
  • The Faithful Spy: Dietrich Bonhoeffer and the Plot to Kill Hitler by John Hendrix (Harry N. Abrams/Amulet)

Finalists: Best in Young Adult Graphic Literature


  • Illegal by Eoin Colfer (Sourcebooks Jabberwocky)
  • Manga Classics: Macbeth by Crystal S. Chan (UDON Entertainment)
  • Monstress, Volume 3 by Marjorie Liu (Image Comics)
  • On a Sunbeam by Tillie Walden (First Second)
  • The Prince and the Dressmaker by Jen Wang (First Second)


  • Anne Frank’s Diary by Ari Folman (Pantheon)
  • Grand Theft Horse by G. Neri (Lee and Low Books). Read this one just last week.  Need to read all of the nonfiction titles since I have an idea…
  • Hey, Kiddo by Jarrett J. Krosoczka (Graphix)
  • Strange Fruit, Volume II: More Uncelebrated Narratives from Black History by Joel Christian Gill (Fulcrum Publishing)
  • The Unwanted: Stories of the Syrian Refugees by Don Brown (HMH Books for Young Readers)

Finalists: Best in Adult Graphic Literature


  • A Sea of Love by Wilfrid Lupano and Gregory Panaccione (Lion Forge)
  • Berlin by Jason Lutes (Drawn and Quarterly)
  • Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles by Mark Russell and Mike Feehan (DC Comics)
  • Infidel by Pornsak Pichetshote and Others (Image Comics).  Hmm. I’m 90% certain that this is on my “checked-out-from-the-library shelf.  I thought it was YA?  
  • Upgrade Soul by Ezra Claytan Daniels (Lion Forge)


  • Algeria is Beautiful Like America by Olivia Burton and Mahi Grand (Lion Forge)
  • All the Answers by Michael Kupperman (Gallery 13)
  • Brazen: Rebel Ladies Who Rocked the World by Pénélope Bagieu (First Second)
  • Escaping Wars and Waves: Encounters with Syrian Refugees by Olivier Kugler (Penn State University Press)
  • Monk!: Thelonious, Pannonica, and the Friendship Behind a Musical Revolution by Youssef Daoudi (First Second)

Winners for books published in 2018 will be announced at the ceremony on June 1.  The finalists were not announced for several other categories but you can read the complete story here.

Don’t think of graphic novels as comic books – super hero, pulp fiction with weak characterization and no plot.  Heck, I’d challenge that assumption even for a super hero book. These are books with strong stories and characters that can help broaden the range of people who consider themselves readers.


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