Oct/Nov 2007  •   Reviews & Interviews

What the Folks in Santa Cruz Are Reading: Ten Best Graphic Novels of the Year & Harvey Award Winners

Review by Maryanne Snell

Looking for something new to read? Here's what people in Santa Cruz, California, are reading. The following is a list of Atlantis Fantasyworld's top selling graphic novels and comics for the year.


Top 10 Graphic Novel Series

1. Fables (DC Comics): When a savage creature known only as the Adversary conquered the fabled lands of legends and fairy tales, all of the infamous inhabitants of folklore were forced into exile. Disguised among the normal citizens of modern-day New York, these magical characters have created their own peaceful and secret society. Then things begin to go wrong.

2. Y the Last Man (DC Comics): When a plague of unknown origin instantly kills every mammal with a Y chromosome, unemployed and unmotivated slacker Yorick Brown suddenly discovers that he is the only male left in a world inhabited solely by women. Accompanied by his mischievous monkey and the mysterious Agent 355, Yorick embarks on a transcontinental journey to find his girlfriend and discover why he is the last man on Earth.

3. Runaways (Marvel): The series features a group of teenagers who try to make up for the evil done by their super villain parents by becoming superheroes.

4. Usagi Yojimbo (Dark Horse): Set primarily at the beginning of Edo period Japan, with anthropomorphic animals replacing humans, this title features a rabbit ronin who wanders the land on a warrior's pilgrimage and occasionally sells his services as bodyguard.

5. Walking Dead (Image): When zombies overrun the world, a small group of survivors struggle to stay alive.

6. Star Wars: The Clone Wars Adventures (Dark Horse): Inspired by the Cartoon Network's Clone Wars cartoons, this new series uses the television show as a jumping-off point to tell new stories of heroism and villainy in the same stripped-down visual style.

7. Preacher (DC Comics): Merging with a bizarre spiritual force called Genesis, Preacher Jesse Custer becomes completely disillusioned with the beliefs that he had dedicated his entire life to. Now possessing the power of the word, an ability to make people do whatever he utters, Custer begins a violent and riotous journey across the country. Joined by his girlfriend Tulip and the hard drinking Irish vampire Cassidy, the Preacher loses faith in both man and God as he witnesses dark atrocities and improbable calamities during his exploration of America.

8. Naruto(Viz): Twelve years ago the village of Konohagakure was attacked by a fearsome threat—a nine-tailed fox demon which claimed the life of the Hokage, the village champion. Today, peace has returned, and a troublemaking orphan named Uzumaki Naruto is struggling to graduate from the Ninja Academy.

9. Bone—Color Versions (Scholastic): This all ages series concerns Fone Bone and his troublemaking cousins, on the run from angry villagers. They find their way into a valley, and as as they stay longer they encounter humans and other creatures who are threatened by adark lord, Lord of the Locusts. Fone Bone is drawn into the events around him and finds himself on a heroes journey to help save the world.

10. (tie) Ex Machina (DC Comics): Set in our modern-day world, EX MACHINA tells the story of civil engineer Mitchell Hundred, who becomes America's first living, breathing super-hero after a strange accident gives him amazing powers. Eventually Mitchell tires of risking his life merely to maintain the status quo, retires from masked crimefighting and runs for mayor of New York City, winning by a landslide. But Mayor Hundred has to worry about more than just budget problems and an antagonistic governor, especially when a mysterious hooded figure begins assassinating plow drivers during the worst snowstorm in the city's history!

11. (tie) Sandman (DC Comics): A wizard attempting to capture Death to bargain for eternal life traps her younger brother Dream instead. Fearful for his safety, the wizard kept him imprisoned in a glass bottle for decades. After his escape, Dream, also known as Morpheus, goes on a quest for his lost objects of power.



1. Dark Tower: The Gunslinger Born #7

2. Captain America #25: The Death of Captain America

3. Civil war #7

4. Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 8 #1

5. Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 8 #2

6. Civil War #6

7. Dark Tower: The Gunslinger Born #2

8. Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 8 #3

9. Dark Tower: The Gunslinger Born #3

10. Dark Tower: The Gunslinger Born #4


NOTE: Many of the above synopses were taken from the publisher's promotional material.


Harvey Award Winners

The Harvey Awards are comic industry awards for outstanding work in comic and sequential art. Nominations for the Harvey Awards are selected exclusively by creators—those who write, draw, ink, letter, color, design, edit, or are otherwise involved in a creative capacity in the comics field. They are the only industry awards both nominated by and selected by the full body of comic book professionals.

The 2007 awards were presented on Sept. 8, 2007. If you're looking for an acclaimed book by those who know what they're talking about, take a look at one of these:

Best Single Issue or Story: Civil War #1 (Marvel)

Best New Series: The Spirit (DC Comics)

Best Graphic Album— Original: Pride of Baghdad (DC Comics/Vertigo)

Best Continuing or Limited Series: Daredevil (Marvel Comics)

Best Graphic Album—Previously Published: Absolute New Frontier (DC Comics)

Best Anthology: Flight vol 3 (Ballantine Books)

Best Biographical, Historical or Journalistic Presentation: Art Out of Time: Unknown Comic Visionaries 1900-1969 (Abrams)

Best Syndicated Strip of Panel: Keith Knight, The K Chronicles

Best Online Comics Work: Nicholas Gurewitch, Perry Bible Fellowship

Best American Edition of Foreign Material (tie): Abandon the Old in Tokyo and Moomin (Drawn + Quarterly)

Best Domestic Reprint Project: Complete Peanuts (Fantagraphics)

Best Writer: Ed Brubaker, Daredevil

Best Artist: Frank Quitely, All-Star Superman

Best Cartoonist: Jaime Hernandez, Love & Rockets

Best Letterer: Stan Sakai, Usagi Yojimbo

Best Colorist: Lark Pien, American Born Chinese

Best Inker: Danny Miki, Eternals

Best Cover Artist: James Jean

Best New Talent: Brian Fies, Mom's Cancer

Special Award for Humor in Comics: Bryan Lee O'Malley, Scott Pilgrim & the Infinite Sadness

Special Award for Excellence in Presentation: Lost Girls (Top Shelf)


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