This month’s selection of new graphic novels includes seven first volumes of new series, with one from well-known writers Brian K. Vaughan and Brian Wood. There are stories about superheroes, horror stories and historical, mysteries and science fiction, all very different, but all provide great entertainment.
Cluster / created by Ed Brisson ; & [illustrated by] Damian Couceiro.
“In the distant future, as mankind discovers life on other planets, it needs soldiers to defend its colonies and outposts across the stars. In order to increase the number of boots on the ground, criminals are offered the opportunity to serve in the place of incarceration. But as wars wage on and more soldiers are needed, small-time crimes are given long-term punishments. When a rag-tag group of prisoners serving their time as soldiers become stranded and abandoned on a war-torn planet, they’ll need to work together to survive and uncover the truth behind Earth’s role in deep space.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
The Paybacks. Volume 1, Payback’s a bitch / script by Donny Cates and Eliot Rahal ; art by Geoff Shaw.
“Heroism doesn’t come cheap, so when superheroes borrow money to finance their genetic enhancements, robotic suits or crime-fighting supercomputers, their debts make student loans look like IOUs. Enter the Paybacks, a repo squad composed of bankrupt former heroes like Night Knight and Miss Adventure, here to foreclose on everybody’s secret lairs. But now the Paybacks have discovered a fate far worse than debt: a murderer is on the loose, and it just may be one of their own.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
The beauty. volume 1.
“Modern society is obsessed with outward beauty. What if there was a way to guarantee you could become more and more beautiful every day? What if it was asexually transmitted disease? In the world of The Beauty, physical perfection is only one sexual encounter away. The vast majority of the population has taken advantage of it, but Detectives Vaughn and Foster will soon discover it comes at a terrible cost.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Covenant. Volume one, Siege / created and written by Rob Liefeld ; illustrated by Matt Horak.
“The legendary Ark of the Covenant has laid waste to entire armies. Now, it has been raided and stolen, ripped from the field of battle by the terrible Philistine forces. THE COVENANT tells the story of Samuel, the last Judge of Israel, and his fight to retrieve the Ark of the Covenant from the clutches of the Philistine nation.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Something new : tales from a makeshift bride / by Lucy Knisley.
“DIY maven Lucy Knisley was fascinated by American wedding culture, but also sort of horrified by it. So she set out to plan and execute the adorable DIY wedding to end all adorable DIY weddings. And she succeeded.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Wolf. Volume 1, Blood and magic / writer, Ales Kot ; artist, Matt Taylor.
“Antoine Wolfe, a hard-boiled paranormal detective with a death wish, has to cope with sudden responsibility for an orphaned teenage girl who might be the key to the impending apocalypse “California” style.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Cigarette girl / Masahiko Matsumoto ; foreword by Yoshihiro Tatsumi ; translated by Spencer Fancutt, with assistance of Atsuko Saisho.
“Welcome to the quiet, evocative urban dramas of Masahiko Matsumoto, one of the leading lights of the Japanese alternative-comics movement known as “gekiga.” Originally published in 1974, these eleven stories now form the first English-language collection of Matsumoto’s mature work. His shy, uncertain heroes face broken hearts, changing families, money troubles, sexual anxiety, and the pressures of tradition, but with a whimsy and lightness of touch that is Matsumoto’s trademark.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Paul up North / Michel Rabagliati.
“Rabagliati continues his award-winning semi-autobiographical Paul series in this coming of age story. The action takes place in 1975-76 just before and during the summer Olympics in Montreal. Paul is now 16, a teenager, and he finds new experiences, changes schools, hitchhikes, falls deeply in love, gets dumped, smokes pot and drinks beer.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
We stand on guard / Brian K. Vaughan, Steve Skroce.
“Set 100 years in our future, this action packed military thriller follows a heroic band of Canadian civilians turned freedom fighters who must defend their homeland from invasion by a technologically superior opponent, the United States of America.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Rebels. Volume 1, A well-regulated militia / story, Brian Wood ; art, Andrea Mutti (Chapters 1-6 & 9), Matthew Woodson (Chapter 7), Ariela Kristantina (Chapter 8), Tristan Jones (Chapter 10).
“This is 1775. With the War for Independence playing out across the colonies, young Seth and Mercy Abbott find their new marriage tested at every turn as the demands of the frontlines and the home front collide. Not merely rehashing the tales of the most famous men of the time, Rebels details the epic story of the colonists, explorers and traders, wives and daughters, farmers and volunteer soldiers who, in a few short, turbulent years, created the brand new nation of America.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)