As part of the Winter ALA fest, the list of 2009 Great Graphic Novels for Teens was also released. It’s a wide-ranging sampling, from manga to YA lit and back. The librarians also chose a Top Ten, which doesn’t include all of the creators, sadly, a librarian quirk, but we’ve added them in where we knew it:

Abel, Jessica, Gabe Soria and Warren Pleece. Life Sucks. First Second. 2008. 978-1-59643-107-2. $19.95.

Ashihara, Hinako. Sand Chronicles, v. 1. VIZ. 2008. 978-1-4215-1477-2. $8.99.
—. Sand Chronicles, v. 2. VIZ. 2008. 978-1-4215-1478-9. $8.99.
—. Sand Chronicles, v. 3. VIZ. 2008. 978-1-4215-1479-6. $8.99.

Clevinger, Brian. Atomic Robo: Atomic Robo and the Fightin’ Scientists of Tesladyne. 2008. Red Five Comics. 978-0-9809302-0-7. $18.99.

Inoue, Takehiko. Real, v. 1. VIZ. 2008. 978-4215-1989-0. $12.99.
—. Real, v. 2. VIZ. 2008. 978-1-4215-1990-6. $12.99.

Ito, Junki. Uzumaki, v.1. VIZ. 2007. 978-1-4215-1389-8. $9.99.

Landowne, Youme. Pitch Black. Cinco Puntos Press. 2008. 978-1-9336-9306-4. $14.00.

Steinberger, Aimee Major. Japan Ai: A Tall Girl’s Adventures in Japan. Go Comi. 2007. 978-1-933617-83-1. $16.99.

Tamaki, Mariko and Jillian Tamaki. Skim. Groundwood Books. 2008. 978-0-8889-9753-1. $18.95.

Way, Gerard and Gabriel Bá. Umbrella Academy: Apocalypse Suite. Dark Horse. 2008. 978-1-59307-978-9. $17.95.

Wilson, G. Willow and M.K. Perker. Cairo. Vertigo. 2007. 978-1-4012-1140-0. $24.99.


  1. I talked to Robin Brenner, the chair of the committee, and she let me know that they’re getting the artists added in. It was a rules/format thing, but they’re in the process of fixing it so all the creators are listed.

  2. For people who have been wondering why librarians’ lists of works of graphic fiction routinely omit the names of the artists: The reason probably has to do with the way books are cataloged.

    If one accesses the Library of Congress’s online catalog at and does a basic author search on, say, Alan Moore, she’ll wind up with a list of books by various Moores; the right one has a birth date of 1953. Below is the DLC-created record for BATMAN: THE KILLING JOKE.

    LC Control No.: 89104561
    000 00949cam a2200289 a 450
    001 2456606
    005 20020930144613.0
    008 890118s1988 nyua 000 0 eng
    035 __ |9 (DLC) 89104561
    906 __ |a 7 |b cbc |c orignew |d 2 |e ncip |f 19 |g y-gencatlg
    955 __ |a ep50 01-18-89; ec07 to SCD 01-30-89; fc04 1-03-89; fm06 02-22-89
    010 __ |a 89104561
    020 __ |c $3.50
    040 __ |a DLC |c DLC |d DLC
    050 00 |a PN6728.B36 |b M66 1988
    082 00 |a 741.5/941 |2 19
    100 1_ |a Moore, Alan, |d 1953-
    245 10 |a Batman : |b the killing joke / |c Alan Moore, Brian Bolland, John Higgins.
    260 __ |a New York, NY : |b DC Comics, |c c1988.
    300 __ |a [48] p. : |b chiefly col. ill. ; |c 26 cm.
    500 __ |a Cover title.
    650 _0 |a Batman (Fictitious character) |v Fiction.
    700 1_ |a Bolland, Brian.
    700 1_ |a Higgins, John.

    If one looks up the MARC record for Jessica Abel’s LIFE SUCKS, she’ll find Abel with the main entry (100) tag to herself, and the other creators at the bottom with added entry (700) tags, as was the case for KILLING JOKE.

    It’s customary to give the writer, not the illustrator, the main entry tag even for children’s picture books, which are usually mostly illustrations.

    So, when librarians omit the names of artists, they’re doing what’s customary in the library field. If one wants to get technical, he could argue that the author is presumed to be responsible for the story content, so problems with the story content as such will be assigned to him.


  3. Thanks for explaining that Steven -I was getting pissed, LOL. In a few other places that I’ve seen the list they changed my name to “Steve”. Which is a fine name and all -it’s just not mine. :)

    Oh well Clevinger deserves the credit.

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