Blacksad

Juan Diaz Canales

Juanjo Guarnido

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John Blacksad is a private investigator trying to make it in a world rife with racism and corruption. Throughout his cases--which include the murder of an old flame and a missing child---Blacksad comes face to face with darkness and tries to do the right thing in a world that is very difficult. With a witty lead, lush illustrations, and compelling stories, Blacksad is not to be missed.

Appeals to

Fans of gritty mysteries

Content Notes

Violence and gore, including murder and a hanging, nudity

Creator Identities:

  • Race and/or Nationality: Spanish
Recommended by

Megan Rupe

Black Magick

Greg Rucka

Nicola Scott

Cover Image

Rowan Black isn't just a cop; she's also a witch, and while the two parts of herself sometimes work together, it can also be hard to juggle. And things are getting magical in a bad way around the town of Portsmouth lately, so she's going to have to work hard to keep her life balanced. The art is primarily grayscale, with hints of color that are very effective in adding to the general dark mood of the comic.

Appeals to

This comic is absolutely perfect for fans of Buffy: The Vampire Slayer, with similar themes and tone, though Black Magick is more serious than silly. It could also be a good fit for readers of Hillbilly, who enjoy a limited color palette and a moody comic full of mystery and fantasy in a realistic setting. If mystical horror is more the thing, then this comic could also appeal to fans of Locke & Key.

Content Notes

There is some gore and violence, swearing, nudity, and the expected witchcraft in this comic.

Recommended by

Shannan Prukop

Grimoire Noir

Vera Greentea

Yana Bogatch

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Told in a moody, limited color palette, and set in a town where all the girls are witches, we meet Bucky Orsen, a lonely teen feeling especially isolated lately without powers of his own. Then his sister, a particularly talented young witch, gets kidnapped and Bucky is the only one who can investigate. Along the way, he'll earn a new appreciation for his hometown and unearth some unfortunate truths about its residents.

Appeals to

Grimoire Noir is a great choice for readers that like real-world problems tinged with magic, like the werewolf teen drama of Squad or the curses and self-reflection of Mooncakes. Its moody tone is also ideal for readers of gothic fiction and noir stories (it's right in the title, after all).

Recommended by

Shannan Prukop

Gotham Academy

Brenden Fletcher

Karl Kerschl

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Take all the hijinks of Scooby-Doo, but then set it in Gotham (yes, that Gotham), and make all the monsters real! Because again, Gotham. If you ever wanted to know what it's like as a normal person in the great city of the Bat, this is a great pick. Olive Silverlock has personal mysteries she's trying to solve, and Maps Mizoguchi is new to the school, ready to solve mysteries. Also, ready to become the next Robin. It's funny, sweet, sad, and has plenty of mystery to go around!

Appeals to

Gotham Academy, due to its setting and some character crossover, is a sure choice for fans of Batman and his associated villains and compatriots looking for a more (sometimes) human experience of Gotham. It's also a fun mystery story with all the usual suspects: family secrets, old books, hidden passageways, and possible occult ties, so if that's your jam, give it a try.

Recommended by

Shannan Prukop

Investigators

John Patrick Green

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Alligators Mango and Brash are investigators with SUIT. They're currently investigating the disappearance of Chef Gustavo Mustacho, but an explosion at the Science Factory increases their caseload! Can Mango and Brash unravel both mysteries?

Appeals to

InvestiGators' brightly colored illustrations and punny humor will make this popular with young readers looking for something fun and silly.

Recommended by

Megan Rupe

A Study in Emerald

Neil Gaiman

Rafael Albuquerque

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In this Lovecraftian reimaging of Arthur Conan Doyle's "A Study in Scarlet," a consulting detective and his new companion investigate the killing of Prince Franz Drago of Bohemia but solving that case does not go as smoothly as the detectives had hoped.

Appeals to

Both Sherlock and Lovecraft fans will find something to love in this graphic novel.

Main Character Identities:

  • Disability: 7054
Recommended by

Tayla Cardillo

The Mystery of the Meanest Teacher

Ryan North

Derek Charm

Cover Image

When John "Kid" Constantine upsets a ghost candy shop owner and his cousin, who ride ghost dinosaurs, he must head to a boarding school in America while things in London cool down. When he arrives, there is one teacher who seems to have it out for him from the moment they met. Kid and his new friend Anna work together to get to the bottom of why Ms. Kayla is suddenly so mean.

Appeals to

Fans of the My Weird School series will love DC's new take on their most well know magic users.

Recommended by

Tayla Cardillo

The Oracle Code

Marieke Nijkamp

Manuel Preitano

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This new take on Barbara Gordon and her journey to becoming Oracle has her caught in the crosshairs of a shooting and paralyzed from the waist down. In order to adjust to her new life as a wheelchair user, she is sent to Arkham Center for Independence, where she receives rehab, mental health counseling, and life skills training alongside other kids with disabilities. But something seems to be off about the Arkham Center for Independence and Barbara is determined to get to the bottom of it.

Appeals to

Everyone whose suspicious of an old mansion being repurposed as any type of medical facility.

Content Notes

Brief discussion fo gun volience.

Creator Identities:

  • Gender Identity: Nonbinary
  • Neurodivergence: Autistic Spectrum

Main Character Identities:

  • Disability: Wheelchair User
Recommended by

Tayla Cardillo

Montague Twins

Nathan Page

Drew Shannon

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Twins Arty and Pete have a knack for solving mysteries. When an odd storm blows in they discover a mysterious box and soon find themselves on the trail of an old local secret that could have significant consequences for certain members of the community.

Appeals to

Readers who like a bit of magic with their mystery; readers who enjoy classic kid detective stories such as Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys

Content Notes

Some injury; a disembodied hand scampering around; implied abuse

Main Character Identities:

  • Sexuality: 5362
Recommended by

Megan Rupe

Wicked Things

John Allison

Max Sarin

Cover Image

Charlotte Grote thinks she's going to London to accept an award for best teen detective--instead, she's accused of murdering one of the adult detectives! As she tries to find the real killer, Charlotte agrees to help the police with other cases and stay in a place full of other criminals. She soon worms her way out of tea duty and into case-solving, but can she prove that's she an asset?

Appeals to

Teens looking for a fun mystery with a sharp, hyper detective need to look no further. Readers who liked the humor and expressive art in Allison and Sarin's Giant Days will want to give this one a try as well.

Recommended by

Megan Rupe

The Private Eye

Brian K. Vaughan

Marcos Martin

Cover Image

Ever since the cloud burst and exposed everyone's secrets, the Internet has been gone and adults use disguises in their everyday lives. PI is an unlicensed investigator who uncovers secrets for money. When a customer gets killed, PI finds himself on the trail of a mystery that could change everything.

Appeals to

Readers looking for a well-crafted, action-packed story with sharp social commentary

Content Notes

Blood, violence, nudity, language

Creator Identities:

  • Race and/or Nationality: Spanish

Main Character Identities:

  • Race and/or Nationality: Black
Recommended by

Megan Rupe

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