Benjamin’s Recommendations

Calling Dr. Laura

Calling Dr. Laura : a graphic memoirBy Georges, Nicole J.
With the new popularity of non-fiction comics, sometimes it is tough to weed through them all to find a gem. Calling Dr. Laura is one such gem. It follows the author as she tries to find her father, who she recently finds is alive, through a psychic. Along the way, we learn about Georges’ childhood, her strained relationship with her mother, and her partners, her friends, her music, her art, her community, her chickens and dogs.
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Lighter Than My Shadow

Lighter than my shadowBy Green, Katie (Illustrator)
Katie Green tells the story of her complicated relationship with food and self image, starting from a young age, and how it was influenced by so many in her life. Divided into large sections distinguished by colors used, you get to see different influences on Green as well as different facets to the condition.
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Not the Israel My Parents Promised Me

Not the Israel my parents promised meBy Pekar, Harvey
Harvey Pekar’s last comic, released posthumously, is also one of his greatest. Not the Israel My Parents Promised Me is the story of the Jewish people told over the course of millennia. It is also the story of Harvey Pekar’s evolving relationship to the State of Israel from his childhood until his late adulthood.... Read more
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Displacement

Displacement : a travelogueBy Knisley, Lucy
Lucy Knisley contributes to her always impressive comics oeuvre with her newest addition, Displacement : a travelogue. In this slice of Knisley’s life, we learn about her trip on a cruise with her grandparents.
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Pregnant Butch: Nine Long Months Spent in Drag

Pregnant butch : nine long months spent in dragBy Summers, A. K.
This autobiographic comic, with names changed, follows Teek, a butch woman, and the protagonist of this tale, along with Vee, her “no-nonsense femme girlfriend” as they navigate the already difficult world of pregnancy with the added intersections with their unique gender experience.
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March: Book one

March. Book oneBy Lewis, John, 1940 February 21-
These days we are celebrating many fifty year milestones from the African American Civil Rights Movement. While many of the important figures from the movement are not with us anymore, we are lucky to still have John Lewis, who, among other accomplishments, was chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee from 1963 to 1966. Currently, he is serving as a Congressman, representing the 5th Congressional District of Georgia.... Read more
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Freedom on my Mind

Marbles : Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, and Me

Marbles : mania, depression, Michelangelo, and me : a graphic memoirBy Forney, Ellen
Have you heard of the concept of graphic medicine? Comics can be used these days (since comics these days cover such wide topics) therapeutically and even educationally in doctor / patient settings.... Read more
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Mole Music

Mole musicBy McPhail, David M.
"Mole Music" is one of the most inspiring picture books I have read in a while. The concept is simple. Mole, who lives underground, feels like something is missing from his life, and starts practicing the violin, becoming better and better at it. All day at work, he begins to hum the music he’ll practice at night. Mole doesn't know that his music is affecting the world above him.... Read more
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Oh, Lewis!

Oh, Lewis!By Rice, Eve
"Oh, Lewis!" is a short, simple story of a child whose winter clothing keeps coming undone or going lost, only to have his mother help with it, as Lewis, his sister, and his mother go on errands around town. What makes this book fun besides the cute story, is the window into a different way of living than you normally see depicted in contemporary picture books ("Oh, Lewis!" was written in 1974).... Read more
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Barefoot Gen

Barefoot Gen. Volume one, a cartoon story of HiroshimaBy Nakazawa, Keiji
Barefoot Gen is unlike any comic I have read before. It is a 10 part series that looks like any other run of the mill, industrially made manga, at first glance. However, what lies within is much more harrowing and fulfilling. Written in the early seventies, Barefoot Gen was the first manga to be translated into English, and it was done by a group of volunteers called Project Gen.... Read more
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Chickens Aren't the Only Ones

Chickens aren't the only onesBy Heller, Ruth, 1924-
Who says books you learn from can't be fun and beautiful? "Chickens Aren't the Only Ones" teaches kids (and adults!) all about all the egg laying animals there are, the eggs they lay, and how they lay them. Starting with the chicken eggs we see in grocery stores, the book expands to all different kinds of birds, reptiles, amphibians, sea creatures, bugs and even monotremes.... Read more
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Piggybook (2 items)

Burma VJ

Burma VJ : [videorecording] reporting from a closed countryBy Ostergaard, Anders
If you don't have plans for the Fourth of July, take a chance on this documentary. I watched it a few Fourth of July's back and it turned out to be a poignant film to watch on the Fourth of July, as we celebrated our freedom and independence from Great Britain, to watch another people strive to create some form of democracy against a cruel military dictatorship.... Read more
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Round Trip

Bubbles and Gondola

Bubbles & gondolaBy Dillies, Renaud, 1972-
Don't be fooled by this cutsie cover. "Bubbles & Gondola" is a comic that deals with serious issues, yet in a playful way. Renaud Dillies's work echos that of the classic European comics tradition (Tintin, Asterix). The story follows an anthropomorphised mouse named Charlie and he navigates his way through his crisis with dealing with others and his desire for solitude.... Read more
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My Friend Dahmer

My friend DahmerBy Derf
When I picked up "My Friend Dahmer" I was expecting somewhat of a creepy, bro-y graphic novel about a serial killer's origins. Aspects of this comic were creepy, but I couldn't have been farther from the truth in my casual apprehension. This is one of the better longer, graphic novel length comics I have read in a while.... Read more
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We Were Here : the AIDS Years in San Francisco

We were here : [videorecording] the AIDS years in San FranciscoBy Weissman, David, 1954-
If you are looking for a documentary about a very important part of United States history that has largely been silenced, I highly recommend you check out "We Were Here : the AIDS years in San Francisco." Personally, I had never seen a documentary quite like it before. The documentary sets the stage for issue with background of the setting.... Read more
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College, Inc.

Frontline. College, Inc. [videorecording]
Frontline is a TV series produced by WGBH and shown on most PBS stations. Each episode is an hour long investigative documentary. There have been many great ones over the past 10 years, but a recent one that was released to DVD and is quite interesting in my opinion is College Inc.... Read more
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Award Winners & Bestsellers

Nobel Prize
2015 Prize in Literature
Svetlana Alexievich

National Book Award

2015 Prize for Fiction
Fortune Smiles
by Adam Johnson

2015 Prize for Nonfiction
Between the World and Me
by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Newbery Medal
2016 award
Last Stop on Market Street

by Matt de la Peña

Caldecott Medal
2016 award
Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear
b
y Lindsay Mattick, illustrated by Sophie Blackall

Printz Award

2016 award
Bone Gap

by Laura Ruby

New York Times Fiction Bestsellers (top 5 combined print & e-book sales)
The Last Mile
, by David Baldacci
The Obsession
, by Nora Roberts
Stuck-up Suit, by Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward
Bounty, by Kristen Ashley
The Girl on the Train
, by Paula Hawkins
 

New York Times Nonfiction Bestsellers (top 5 combined print & e-book sale)
The Rainbow Comes and Goes, by Anderson Cooper and Gloria Vanderbilt
The Sleep Revolution, by Arianna Huffington
When Breath Becomes Air
, by Paul Kalanithi
Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates
, by Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaegar
Alexander Hamilton
, by Ron Chernow

 

More Award Winners & Bestsellers

Following is a list of award-winning and bestselling materials from a variety of sources. Links will take you to an external page that will open in a new window. If YDL does not have an item you are interested in, please submit a Materials Suggestion to us.

Academy Awards

American Booksellers Association National Indie Bestsellers

Billboard Top 100 songs

Caldecott Medal

Coretta Scott King Award

New York Times Bestsellers

Newbery Medal

Printz Award