Chris Ware redesigns the PW logo.

Although hampered by the lack of electricity at their offices, Publishers Weekly has managed to release their Best Books lists for 2012.

Leading the list of Best Books is Chris Ware’s Building Stories, published by Pantheon!

Unabashedly rooted in the pre-digital age, Ware’s new work is really 14 individually bound books, ranging from gorgeous hardbacks to thin pamphlets, housed in an oversized box. Read in any order, all the tales within follow the tenants of the same apartment building, including an elderly landlady, a spiteful married couple, and a lonely female amputee. With his trademark obsessive precision, Ware presents the grind and folly of everyday life in the most exhilarating fashion.

The following are their best graphic novels for 2012.  Click to read analysis and reviews!

All of the lists are full of interesting titles.  I did not recognize a single book on the SF/Fantasy/Horror list, although they all look intriguing.

Among the numerous children’s titles are two graphic novels:


Congrats to all! Every year there are more and more amazing works being published, and it gets tougher not only to select the best, but to keep up with the reading!

Stay tuned for more lists as the year winds down.


  1. Of these titles, I’ve read My Friend Dahmer and WIZZYWIG. Both were exceptional in their portrayals of the lead characters and I highly recommend them. I’m now going to have to check out the other titles on this list (and the Ware book is first on that list).

  2. 1. The only one on the list I’ve read is the Bechdel, which I found worthwhile, but not as strong as Fun Home.
    2. Shame they didn’t think Gone to Amerikay was one of the year’s best.
    3. There are still two months left to the year. Isn’t this a tad premature?

  3. Are You My Mother is one of the greatest books (comics or fiction) I’ve ever read. Gabby Schulz’s Weather was the best comic of the year- far off their radar.

  4. I only read the Dahmer book and Are you My Mother? Derf has always been one of my personal faves, so I dig everything he does. But Bechdel’s Are You My Mother was one of the most boring graphic novels ever created. Its on this list only because its part two to her amazing Fun Home book.

  5. Publishers Weekly is a trade journal which receives titles in advance of publication. Most publishers schedule their books to shop before Halloween, as the holiday marketing season begins the weekend immediately after.
    Everything planned for 2012 has already been seen by PW staff.

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