Alphabetical Index of First Second

Science Comics: Rockets: Defying Gravity

The Science Comics series is generally outstanding, but Rockets: Defying Gravity by Anne Drozd and Jerzy Drozd is one of the best. An exciting subject is made understandable though our charming hosts, a series of educated animals with connections to space exploration. The first chapter (as you can see in these preview pages) covers physics, or as it’s put, “What Makes Rockets Go?” Lewis the pigeon tells us of early experiments in hilarious fashion, calling a wooden, steam-powered bird his […]

Read more

Maker Comics: Bake Like a Pro! and Fix a Car!

I adore First Second’s Science Comics line. Most all of them are terrific true-life graphic novels about interesting topics. Not only are they educational, they’re entertaining, and well worth reading. Now the publisher has expanded their non-fiction line with the new Maker Comics, which are similar, but focused on craft and skills instead of intellectual knowledge. The first two books are very different in topics, but both are equally informative and practical, covering things most people would benefit from learning. […]

Read more

One Day a Dot: The Story of You, the Universe, and Everything

Almost no subject is too much for a children’s storybook, with the right approach, and One Day a Dot: The Story of You, the Universe, and Everything is proof. It tackles the formation of the universe in simple, understandable terms, with lovely images following from the Big Bang through the evolution of humanity and civilization. It’s written by Ian Lendler and illustrated by Shelli Paroline and Braden Lamb. A dot bursts into light and life. It’s given feelings by the […]

Read more

Check, Please!: #Hockey

Ngozi Ukazu’s immensely popular webcomic Check, Please! is here collected in the first of two volumes. Check, Please!: #Hockey covers the freshman and sophomore years of “Bitty”, a former figure-skating champion who’s playing hockey in college. He’s not your typical athlete, since he’s also an excellent baker and coming to terms with his authentic self. He’s also deathly afraid of being checked on the ice. This comic, like its lead, is adorable. It’s told as if we’re watching Bitty’s video […]

Read more

The Prince and the Dressmaker

If you’ve heard of it, you’ve likely heard The Prince and the Dressmaker compared to a fairy tale. There are a bunch of reasons for that — the royal premise, the Cinderella-like experiences of the lead — but mostly, I find it accurate because of the unexpected happy ending. There’s nothing wrong with that! I don’t believe Jen Wang (In Real Life) intended to create a realistic portrayal, but a lovely fable of what things could look like if everyone’s […]

Read more

Science Comics: Solar System: Our Place in Space

A rare misfire for the Science Comics series, Science Comics: Solar System: Our Place in Space goes past educational to sound patronizing. For a book aimed at ages 9-13, the tone is too “kiddy”, and the lessons are presented too blatantly. As written by Rosemary Mosco and illustrated by Jon Chad (who previously authored Science Comics: Volcanoes), it just doesn’t live up to the high standards set by the other books in the line, which are both informative and entertaining. […]

Read more

Kitten Construction Company: Meet the House Kittens

John Patrick Green put a surprising animal into the job market in Hippopotamister, and it was fun. His next book, Kitten Construction Company: Meet the House Kittens, uses even cuter animals in even weirder work. The city wants to build a new mayor’s mansion. Marmalade, an orange cat, is an architect and provides the best design, but the (human) city planner rejects it because it was provided by a “cute little kitten”. He says, “I regret that you are just […]

Read more

Science Comics: Trees: Kings of the Forest

Andy Hirsch is responsible for one of my favorite Science Comics titles, the one about dogs. That’s a high bar to meet, and I have to say, I wasn’t quite as involved in Science Comics: Trees: Kings of the Forest — but trees are a very different subject. They’re more inspiring than adorable. Although Hirsch tries to recapture the cute with his narrator, an acorn, this is instead a volume more about knowledge, and there’s plenty covered. A frog, a […]

Read more
1 2 3 9