Personal Demons (Hopeless, Maine. Vol. 1)

I went to the library and looked at the graphic novel section. A section I have never paid much attention to previously. I would even say, I avoided it. Comics were for teenage boys and a select group of oddball girls. I could not clarify what I meant by oddball, I mostly just meant not me. After reading the majority of The View from the Cheap Seats by Gaiman, I could no longer hold on to this mental model. I was hungry for a good graphic novel. New to this genre, section, entire form of media, I didn’t know what good meant. I just knew there was a very clear distinction. Armed with this very unclear distinction I went to the library and sat in front of the two shelves of graphic novels. I ignored the full shelf of Superman and Spiderman collections. I looked for the unique and artistic books. If I was going to try this media, I would try it my way… look for art, Gaiman, and familiar titles. I happened across Hopeless, Maine.

The artwork was truly magnificent. It was dark and magical. I was sold. I took it home and devoured the story that night. Somehow, I managed across a graphic novel with a heroine. A strong, sweet, and courageous heroine. And after this first volume, I am seeking the rest of the tale. (Which should tell you that although the art called to me, the story caught me in its intricate web.)

Whatever drew me to this short novel, I am thankful. I will no longer avoid this section of the library or bookstore. If I am truly honest, I looked up the closest comic book store near me. I am grateful to this little, sweet tale for drawing me in and exposing me to a magical and delightful new media.

Take it from me, comics are not just for kids. They are not just for teenagers. They are not just for that miscellaneous category of oddball in your subconscious. They are for all of us and we should not avoid them.

-A Bookish Girl (A Comic Reader Too)

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