First Second's upcoming graphic novels
Among the 16 books in First Second's Spring 2018 graphic novel catalog are the stories of a World War II draft-dodger, a haunted playground, and the special hell that is summer camp in middle school — and EW can exclusively reveal their covers. The acclaimed graphic novel authors featured in the lineup include Hope Larson, Vera Brosgol, Scott Westerfeld, Robert Kondo, and Daisuke Tsutsumi, among others. Get your first look at the covers, along with commentary from First Second executive editor Calista Brill, ahead.
May 8, 2018 Animus by Antoine Revoy
"Get ready to be creepified by this spooky manga-inspired story of a haunted playground," Brill says. "Drawn in moody black-and-white, this is one of those stories that sits at the intersection of scary and silly, and transcends both—it's superb."
May 15, 2018 Chasma Knights by Kate Reed Petty and Boya Sun
"In a world where heroes interface with toys, having the newest gadget is the only way to win the candy-colored rat-race," says Brill. "But what happens to the broken toys—or the cast-off ones? One brave knight is out to rehabilitate those broken toys—and change her world while she's at it."
May 22, 2018 One Day a Dot by Ian Lendler, Shelli Paroline, and Braden Lamb
"An accessible and surprisingly moving look at the history of... life, the universe, and everything!" says Brill. "One Day a Dot introduces the visual motif of a dot and walks you through all the dots that have led to our lives here on earth: the dot of the big bang, the dot of the earth, and the dot of the first cellular life... you could say that One Day a Dot connects the dots! (See what I did there?)"
May 29, 2018 Be Prepared by Vera Brosgol
"Oh, that special agony of the summer camp you love to hate. Is there anything more relatable—or more delicious to suffer along with?" Brill says. "Join Anya's Ghost author Vera Brosgol as she bravely relives the special hell of middle-school social madness in her summer-camp-based memoir, Be Prepared."
May 29, 2018 Cucumber Quest: The Melody Kingdom by Gigi D.G.
"Proving that psychedelia isn't just for grownups anymore, Cucumber Quest continues its saga of swirling colors and hallucinatory adventure as the world's most adorable comics protagonist—the bunny Cucumber—seeks to save his world from the forces of evil," Brill says.
June 12, 2018 Science Comics: Rockets by Anne Drozd and Jerzy Drozd
"Bringing the colorful fun of comics to bear, the Science Comics series tackles specific topics in kid’s nonfiction and makes an expert out of you...and is SO MUCH FUN to boot," Brill says. "In Rockets, we join a ragtag group of animal pals in learning about the wonderfully challenging world of, well, rocket science."
June 26, 2018 Quirk’s Quest: The Lost and the Found by Robert Christie and Deborah Lang
"The muppety adventures of Captain Quirk continue in the second installment of this adorable and hilarious elementary-age adventure," Brill says.
June 26, 2018 All Summer Long by Hope Larson
"All Summer Long, by Hope Larson and edited by Margaret Ferguson, is a family story, a friendship story, and a coming-of-age story about that one summer when everything changes," says Brill. "Before 13-year-old Bina's best friend, Austin, left to go to soccer camp, he was acting weird. When he comes home, he's acting even weirder. What gives?"
Adds Joy Peskin, editorial director for Farrar Straus Giroux Books for Young Readers: "Growing up, my parents worked at a summer camp, so I went away with them every summer for eight weeks. I always wondered: What's it like for the kids back at home? Hope Larson's story about the way the landscape of friendship shifts over one meaningful summer answers that question with a cast of richly drawn characters, each of whom seemed so real I could hardly believe they wouldn't walk off the page."
July 3, 2018 Pop by Jason Carter Eaton and Matt Rockefeller
"Join Dewey on a quest to pop that last soap bubble... a quest that's going to take him up into the air in a series of increasingly awesome vehicles—ending in a moon rocket," Brill explains. "This picture book is so much fun, and has the most lush, gorgeous illustrations."
July 3, 2018 Cottons: The Secret of the Wind, by Jim Pascoe and Heidi Arnhold
"For fans of Watership Down, a harrowing rabbit adventure with a fantasy twist—this book is everything I wanted when I was 11 years old," Brill says. "Heck, it's everything I want now. And it's the first of a trilogy!"
July 10, 2018 Spill Zone: The Broken Vow by Scott Westerfeld and Alex Puvilland
"Gripping suspense and a fascinating mystery fuel this page-turning sequel to 2016's hit Spill Zone. Scott Westerfeld fans will be delighted, and new readers won't believe their eyes," says Brill. "This is one of the tightest, most riveting reads we've ever published."
July 10, 2018 The Dam Keeper: World Without Darkness by Robert Kondo and Dice Tsutsumi
"The second in this gorgeous, breathtaking trilogy by the animation superstars at Tonko House, this beautiful book continues the adventures of a handful of young protagonists who are just trying to survive in a poisonous world... literally," says Brill.
July 17, 2018 The Adventure Zone: Here Be Gerblins by Clint, Griffin, Justin, and Travis McElroy, and Carey Pietsch
"Fans of the McElroy family's podcasting empire will be thrilled by this graphic novel adaptation of the wildly popular Adventure Zone podcast... but I'm even more excited about introducing the irreverent, off-the-wall, and surprisingly moving RPG storytelling of the podcast to new readers," Brill says. "OMG you guys I CANNOT EVEN: This book is THE BEST."
Aug. 7, 2018 Delilah Dirk and the Pillars of Hercules by Tony Cliff
"I cosplayed as Delilah Dirk one year at New York Comic Con, and I don't cosplay," says Brill. "So that gives you an idea of how amazing this character is: She moves stolid 30-something-year-old editors to don swishy skirts and wave swords around. This third volume in her adventures is the best yet, and that's really saying something."
Aug. 14, 2018 Idle Days by Thomas D. Brousseau and Simon LeClerc
"Jerome is in hiding. He's dodging the draft, to be precise. It's World War II, and Jerome is hiding out in a remote country shack owned by his grandfather until things blow over," says Brill. "But the quiet is disrupted by ghosts—the metaphorical kind, and the heartbreakingly literal kind. A nuanced, melancholy ghost story, Idle Days will astonish you with the vivid power of its art and the sophistication of its storytelling."
Aug. 21, 2018 Science Comics: Trees by Andy Hirsch
"Guess what: You—yes, you—have the capacity to become someone who wants to talk about trees at great length with everyone you meet," says Brill. "All it takes is reading this book. Act now!"