Saturday was Free Comic Book Day and that filled me with happiness.  We had more than 300 people come to our library and get comics.  This was the first year we had people lining up ahead of time, waiting for us to open.  I also have several teen volunteers that come in specifically for this day and thank me like I’ve done them a favor, letting them volunteer for 6 hours on a Saturday.

But my big moment of happiness (mixed with a little sadness) was when a very young girl was looking through our selection.  I was really pleased that there were several options that were girl-friendly this year, even though I’m not really on the Tinker Bell/Disney Princess bandwagon.  But at least the little girls who were walking in for our princess storytime were also entranced by our comic books!  So, this one girl is browsing and she moves away from all the younger comics (Top Shelf, Smurfs/Tinker Bell, Sonic) and down towards the superhero end of the selection.  She picks up The New 52 and I ask her “Oh, do you like Superman?  Or Batman?”  And she gives me this very serious look and says “Sometimes I like stuff that for boys.”  Then she also picks up Star Wars and Spider-man for herself.  I was so happy she wasn’t just going for the “girly” stuff, but also a little sad that superheroes were “for boys”.


I gave a concise guest lecture on superheroes at a fantasy course for retired people at the University of Alberta. The slide show was researched by my daughter (who is my research assistant) and gave me an insight into the superheroes she found important. It was given on Monday, following the magnificent weekend explosion of The Avengers film and Free Comic Book Day. Highly successful and satisfying with many of the attendees remembering reading the early superheroes in their own youth and several others who had already seen the movie, which I still have not.



I’m….making me happy!

I started a series of superhero drawings that are all related to the science they’re defying (Superman/Gravity). 6 of them are up, and I’ll do 20 total.

They all totally have curses in them (which was part of the fun) so consider yourself warned.


I’m happy that I’ve managed to sneak graphic novels into all the summer reading lists I’ve been making this week – even the kindergarteners !

Here’s what I included (K – 12) if you’re interested
Chi’s Sweet Home
Mouse Guard
Page by Paige
Rapunzel’s Revenge
Return of the Dapper Men
American Born Chinese
Girl Genius Omnibus
A Bride’s Story
Marvel 1602
Game of Thrones
Green River Killer: A True Detective Story
Marzi: A Memoir


My happy is The Avengers. I’ve seen it three times so far and have plans to see it many more times when I get back to Boston after finals. No regrets.

Matt Morrison

While most of my co-workers were living it up at the Texas Library Association meeting, I managed to top them all for cool “I got to meet an author” stories.  Why?  Because Neil Gaiman was in Dallas at the same time TLA was going on (his wife was doing an album signing/performance)  and I got to spend a goodly few minutes talking with him as he drew some manner of eldrich abomination in the front of my limited edition novella copy of Shoggoth’s Old Peculiar. 🙂  And he retweeted one of my wisecracks earlier that same day!


My happy is that I’m home! And I’m even happier that I was gone! I got to attend TCAF last weekend where I hung out with four of my most favorite people (Robin, Snow, Deb, and Leyla) and schmoozed with the likes of Raina Telgemeier, Dave Roman, Jim Zub, Andrew Woodrow-Butcher, Kazu Kibuishi, Tori Woollcott, Tony Cliff (in moderation, I didn’t want to overwhelm him with my fangirlish enthusiasm), Gina Gagliano, John Green (not that one, the other one), and, well, you get the idea. I’m still basking in the glow of con-glee. Sigh, TCAF is the best.


I’m excited to see The Avengers this Sunday!  Unfortunately, I live too far away to celebrate with my Mom on Mother’s Day, so I’m going to make myself feel better by going and seeing The Avengers!  And, boy, do I have a lot of GNs on my desk to read!  Tina’s Mouth, TeenBoat!, Daybreak, Daredevil Season One and Marvel Zombies Supreme!


My library’s copy of Bechdel’s Are You My Mother? finally showed up! I haven’t had a chance to do anything more than flip through it, but it’s already making me happy.


My happy is also a bit of sadness. Six volumes of the Spawn Origins reprint came in and I was so excited to read through a comic I missed out on back in the day. Although the comics escaped me, I watched and extremely enjoyed the HBO animated mini series, which ended on a merciless cliff hanger. I had hoped, by reading the comics I would get to see what was going on,  it I’ve found the source material is different from the show. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but I’m a little taken aback at how…offbeat the comic can be. For instance, I just finished a story arc that involved Spawn teaming up with Harry Houdini in order to stop a nuclear bomb threat from “Commies with guns.” Er, wha…?


I am happy this week because I had a fantastic time at my first TCAF. Scott Robins and I launched our new book — A Parent’s Guide to the Best Kids’ Comics — to an appreciative crowd, who graciously bought many copies, thereby reassuring my husband that I’m not nuts for doing what I do.


Perhaps I am a little insane, but I totally spent 1200 bucks to get two tickets to MorrisonCon.  Three days at the Hard Rock Hotel in Vegas with Grant Morrison, Frank Quitely, Jim Lee, Jonathan Hickman, Gerard Way, and undisclosed other guests?  Limited to 1000 tickets?!  I’m in!

  • Robin B.

    | She/Her Teen Librarian, Public Library of Brookline

    Editor in Chief

    Robin E. Brenner is Teen Librarian at the Brookline Public Library in Massachusetts. She has chaired the American Library Association Great Graphic Novels for Teens Selection List Committee, the Margaret A. Edwards Award Committee, and served on the Michael L. Printz Award Committee. She is currently the President of the Graphic Novels and Comics Round Table for ALA. She was a judge for the 2007 Eisner awards, helped judge the Boston Globe Horn Book Awards in 2011, and contributes to the Good Comics for Kids blog at School Library Journal. She regularly gives lectures and workshops on graphic novels, manga, and anime at comics conventions including New York and San Diego Comic-Con and at the American Library Association’s conferences. Her guide, Understanding Manga and Anime (Libraries Unlimited, 2007), was nominated for a 2008 Eisner Award.

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