As the leaves begin to turn shades of red and orange (or fall straight off and green depending on where you live), backpacks are dusted off in preparation for a new load of textbooks, and we move into fall, we figure you could use some cause for celebration. How about our Labor Day/Back-To-School Sale? We've got great titles of all-ages, young-adult, and non-fiction titles at a whopping 40% Off from Saturday, August 30th through Monday, September 1st!
For your wee ones, how about our gift-sized, baseball-themed Peanuts book, Batter Up, Charlie Brown? Or, for something a little cheekier, there's Steven Weissman's Chocolate Cheeks. For the baseball fans who want a bit more history mixed in, try 21: The Story of Roberto Clemente by Wilfred Santiago.
School can be anything you make of it, especially you don't give a damn. For the guy or girl that knows everything, try Unlovable 1 and 2 by Esther Pearl Watson. She may only break wind and not hearts, but Tammy Pierce is unstoppable. For some short stories from all walks of life, ugly and less ugly, grab Daniel Clowes' Caricature, often compared to to Nabokov for their complex naturalism and sense of humor.
Is cutting class altogether a common memory for you? How about a classic Fantagraphics alternative comic, sure to win even the most jaded of hearts: Daniel Clowes' Ghost World (now in its 20th printing) is for you. Already have it? Try the male version of Ghost World, Celebrated Summer by Charles Forsman, that came out in 2014. Night Fisher by R. Kikuo Johnson also follows the teenage trail of growing up and growing apart.
Cutting class was too weak? You just dropped out all together? Damn, you might enjoy Giraffes in My Hair, a Jack Kerouac-style story lived by Bruce Paley and drawn by his partner, Carol Swain, all about the summer of '67. On the cusp of flunking out with a drug habit, A Mess of Everything by Miss Lasko-Gross, is an intense and raw look at her own high-school experience. If you're looking for more personal and semi-autobiographical comic stories look no further than The Squirrel Mother by Megan Kelso. It also contains stories about the idea of America and American history, such as a trilogy of short pieces about Alexander Hamilton.
If history is your school-time jam, then grab a copy of Rebel Visions by Patrick Rosenkranz, a history of the alternative cartoonists. Want something even more focused? A history of women cartoonist will suit you just fine in Pretty In Ink: North American Women Cartoonists 1896-2013 by Trina Robbins. Or the Daniel Clowes Reader, featuring most of Clowes' work and papers on the overriding motifs and themes.
Consider some new books about comics as an assignment for a graded discussion. Black Images in the Comics by Fredrik Strömberg walks through comics, old and new, to enlighten the audience about the hideous caricatures racism produces so that we may never stray there again. Best American Comics Criticism compiled by Ben Schwartz features the best essays on comics from Chris Ware on Rodolphe Töpffer, Dan Clowes on Mad's Will Elder, The Daily Show's John Hodgman on Jack Kirby and more!
For those who wish to rise above it all and forget that school ever existed, The Clouds Above is an all-ages full-color romp with a boy and his cat by Jordan Crane. Meanwhile, Barnaby by Crockett Johnson plays with some imaginary creatures including his fairy godfather. Or for something that feels a bit older, more Victorian The Sock Monkey Treasury by Tony Millionaire is for you.
Finally a little prose by Monte Schulz, the novel The Last Rose of Summer. With the Great Depression looming, three strong-minded women related by marriage form an uneasy household in a Southern town.
So clean up on some comics to read while the kids are out at school or to distract you from the textbooks you SHOULD be reading.