During the most recent 24 Hour Readathon, I interspersed my reading with some comics. I had heard great things about each one, so I picked them up from my library and met some new comic authors and illustrators.
Pascal Girard's drawing style is spare in black and white. He doesn't shy away from showing the indignities of being middle aged and overlooked or crashing with friends when your life is a mess. Pascal and the object of his affection make many questionable choices and can be tough characters to root for, but it's a good pick for someone who needs to laugh when everything is going wrong.
Reading Aya was interesting because it is a story like any other teen story; only the illustrations with the sandy roads and the colloquialisms throughout remind us that we are in Africa instead of the US or Europe. The authors truly try to bring you into the time and place of their story and the last few pages include recipes and fashion tips from the characters. If you enjoy Aya, there are five more books about her life and community.
I was pretty little in the late 80s, but the fashion and colors are so fun to see on the page. It's definitely aimed at teens and adults, though, because this is one dark and violent tale. The story is wildly inventive, as you might expect from Brian K. Vaughan, and he leaves the first issue on a fabulous cliffhanger. There are three more volumes if you get swept up in the story of Erin and her fellow paper girls.