Saturday, March 24, 2007

Librarians Like Otis and Raina

The American Library Association, which late last year briefly considered naming Mom's Cancer one of the year's Best Books for Young Adults (and then thought about it and decided, "Nah"), has released its 2007 Top Ten List of Best Graphic Novels for Young Adults. I'm delighted to see that Oddly Normal by my friend Otis Frampton and Kristy's Great Idea by Ann M. Martin and Raina Telgemeier both made the cut.

Otis is a terrific guy who takes the responsibility of writing and drawing stories aimed primarily at kids very seriously. Which is not to say that adults can't appreciate his work, too, but I think he approaches the youth market with a professionalism and respect that's increasingly rare. Same for Raina, whom I've met a few times and like tremendously. A lot of creators, particularly in the broader comics universe, seem embarrassed to write for kids. That's sad. If they knew what they were doing, they'd understand how rich, complex, challenging, rewarding, and important youth literature can be. I think Otis and Raina know what they're doing.

The other eight books on the ALA's Top 10 List of Graphic Novels for Youth are:

Bumperboy and the Loud, Loud Mountain by Debby Huey
Kampung Boy by Lat
Castle Waiting by Linda Medley (met her briefly, too, and her book is great)
Missouri Boy by Leland Myrick
The Legend of Hon Kil Dong: The Robin Hood of Korea by Anne Sibley O'Brien
To Dance: A Ballerina's Graphic Novel by Siena Cherson Siegel
Girl Stories by Lauren Weinstein
American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang (winner of many other honors, haven't had a chance to check it out yet but I will).

Congratulations to all the authors, but especially the ones I know.

1 comment:

Otis Frampton said...

Thanks, Brian! :)