As someone who didn’t start reading comic books until a few years ago, I understand how intimidating and overwhelming it can feel to jump into a comic. Below are my favorite comic books for those that are interested in reading some but don’t know where to start. If these don’t spark your interest, anyone who reads comics will be happy to give you recommendations so don’t be afraid to ask.
Squirrel Girl: We all know Squirrel Girl, aka Doreen Green, is the first comic book series that made me go, “I think I may enjoy comics.” Doreen Green is a college student who has partial squirrel blood in her body and thus has all the proportional abilities of a squirrel. She is a Marvel hero and her and her friends get into many adventures and predicaments as they try to learn computer programming and build friendships. It’s overall pretty positive, the drawing style is great, and the friendship between Doreen and her roommate, Nancy, may be the best friendship ever. Plus, who else can say they have a comic where Loki turns himself into a cat and makes Mjolnir into Meownir? Twelve volumes.
Lumberjanes: Speaking of friendships, Lumberjanes is a series about a group of girls at summer camp. The camp is in some real mysterious and magical woods so it’s only obvious that these girls would explore and go on many escapades. This is also an overall positive story. The writers and artists change throughout the volumes but the world is still able to keep its air of mystery and light heartedness. If you ever dreamed of going to summer camp or ever went to summer camp, this is the comic for you. Twenty volumes.
Sandman: Oh boy, this comic book series is intense. It’s dark, it’s gross, it’s disturbing, it’s creepy. All things I wouldn’t normally love (and don’t love, actually). But the characters are superb and the world is amazing that I push through all the gore and shivers to continue the story. There are some real gem moments in this series. Neil Gaiman is the author and he weaves such an intricate, complicated web of happenings that you’re left agape at his ability to plan. Ever wonder where dreams come from? This series explains it. Part of the DC universe, it’s the only DC comic book story I’ve completed and loved. Eleven volumes (plus a prelude you should read after you finish the series, plus spin offs).
Shout outs to:
- The Wicked and Divine: amazing art (Jamie McKelvie’s style is divine) and story is really interesting. Gods inhabit people every 90 years. Nine volumes.
- Check, Please!: started out as a webcomic (you can read it online for free), cute story about a guy in college playing hockey. The art style is cute and the relationships are fantastic. Four books.
- Nimona: ND Stevenson writes and draws this one volume comic (they also wrote the first couple volumes of Lumberjanes). Nimona is a sidekick to a supervillian in a D&D-esque world. I hope one day there’s more to come with this story.