IDW and the Smithsonian are preparing to launch an all new line of graphic novels. Books under this umbrella will draw inspiration from the museum’s own holdings and research, making for a near-limitless well of educational subject matter.
In a press release, IDW and Smithsonian say the line is aimed at “lifelong learners worldwide” and give creators the opportunity to work directly with museum experts.
With that in mind, there are also three separate product lines, each with more specific frameworks. The first is a middle-grade graphic novel series called Time Trials, which finds inspiration in the National Museum of American History video series. IDW and Smithsonian also promise “original graphic novels focused on landmark events and individuals, in the tradition of IDW’s acclaimed March and They Called Us Enemy,” and picture books. Especially unique about the lineup, though, is the inclusion of picture books, aimed at both adults and youth.
Although this is a landmark collaboration – it’s not the museum’s first excursion into comics. This new relationship continues IDW’s trend of curating and maintaining history and – at the end of a decade where YA comics reigned supreme – continues an exciting trend.
“Award-winning books like March and They Called Us Enemy have demonstrated the massive potential of graphic nonfiction that’s infused with literary richness, visionary artwork, and personal passion,” says Leigh Walton, Editor and Marketing Director for IDW’s Top Shelf imprint. “With the brilliant minds at the Smithsonian, I’m thrilled to apply those same values to explore untold stories and new frontiers around the world and throughout the universe.”
Check out Nate Powell’s interpretation of the Smithsonian Institution Building below and mark your calendar. Books from this collaboration will be available beginning in fall of this year, everywhere books are sold.