Comics & Graphic Novels Without Superheroes // Top Ten Tuesday #18

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We’d love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

This Week’s Theme: Top Ten ALL TIME Favorite Books Of X Genre

And because it wouldn’t be a TTT without me changing things up I’m altering things a little…  Spoiler alert: There’s way more than 10.

My Theme: My Favourite Comics and Graphic Novels that Don’t Feature Superheroes

I originally wasn’t going to participate in TTT this month because I wasn’t feeling any of the topics, but then I figured I could combine a post I was planning with this week’s topic! You all know I’m a huge adcovate of trying to get everyone to read comics and graphic novels. I feel like a lot of people think comics and graphic novels mostly feature super heroes (I know I did!), but that’s not always the case. You don’t have to be interested in Marvel or DC to be able to read comics and graphic novels!

If you’re new to comics & graphic novels and aren’t sure where to start feel free to check out my guide here

Covers = Goodreads


the-wicked-the-divine-vol-1-the-faust-act-by-kieron-gillen the-stonekeeper-by-kazu-kibuishi monstress-vol-1-awakening-by-marjorie-m-liu lumberjanes-vol-1-beware-the-kitten-holy-by-noelle-stevenson

The Wicked + The Divine, Vol 1: The Faust Act by Kieron Gillen (writer) & Jamie McKelvie (art) – Every 90 years Gods reincarnate as humans. This is really intense and full of complex and diverse characters.
Amulet, Vol 1: The Stonekeeper by Kazu Kibuishi – A young girl inherits a magical amulet and the role of a “stonekeeper” from her great-grandfather. She and a brother go through a doorway to another world were she encounters a range of mythical and magical creatures. This is a great starting point if you’ve never read a comic or graphic novel before.
Monstress, Vol 1: Awakening by Marjorie Liu (writer) & Sana Takeda (art)  – This is set in an alternate world when human/monster hybrids exist. It has steam punk and horror elements. The MC is a woman of colour and extremely complex. There’s lots of violence so be careful if that’s not your thing. This can be infodump-y at times, but is really unique.
Lumberjanes, Vol 1: Beware the Kitten Holy by Noelle Stevenson (writer), Grace Ellis, Shannon Watters & Brooke Allen (art) – I talk about this comic all the time. It’s so refreshing. A group of girls are spending their summer at a very unusual summer camp. There’s so many diverse characters and crazy adventures. It’s full of feminine positivity and is my Happy Place™.   

nimona-by-noelle-stevenson the-backstagers-by-james-tynion-iv rat-queens-vol-1-sass-sorcery-by-kurtis-j-wiebe

Nimona by Noelle Stevenson – This is a fantastic take on the heroes vs villain trope. It turns everything about it upside down. I am obsessed with this graphic novel and again it’s a great place to start. Nimona is a shapeshifter. Your heart will probably break at some point while reading this.
The Backstagers #1 by James Tynion IV (writer) & Rian Sygh (art) – A boy starts at a new school and decides to join the Drama club he ends up joining the backstage crew and discovers there’s a backstage door that lead to different worlds. This has a serious Lumberjanes vibe to it and the characters all seem incredibly diverse.
Rat Queens, Vol 1: Sass & Sorcery by Kurtis J. Wiebe (writer) & Roc Upchurch (art)  – A rag tag group of diverse women are killers for hire. The world is full of mythical creatures and monsters. Crazy adventures ensue.


the-beauty-vol-1-by-jeremy-haun-jason-a-hurley paper-girls-vol-1-by-brian-k-vaughan saga-volume-1-by-brian-k-vaughan the-true-lives-of-the-fabulous-killjoys-by-gerard-way

The Beauty, Vol 1 by Jeremy Haun & Jason A. Hurley – This is about a sexually transmitted disease that makes you beautiful. It’s a great look on society’s pressure for people to be “perfect” and how dangerous it is. There’s some gore-y artwork.
Paper Girls, Vol 1 by Brian K. Vaughan (writer), Cliff Chiang & Matthew Wilson (art) – This is honestly so bizarre, but addicting. It’s unlike anything I’ve read before. A group of girls who deliver newspapers in the 80s get caught up with time travelling and aliens and other crazy sci-fi things.
Saga, Vol 1 by Brian K. Vaughan (writer) & Fiona Staples (art) – This is about a married couple who are on the run because they’re on opposites sides of a galactic war. It’s so intense and fast paced. The characters and relationships are incredibly interesting and is one of my favourites. The artwork depicts violence and sexual situations.
The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys by Gerard Way (writer), Shaun Simon & Becky Cloonan (art) – This is set in an apocolyptic desert wasteland and is about a girl trying to lead everyone to freedom from the evil corporation that’s in charge. This is based on My Chemical Romance’s Danger Days album.


through-the-woods-by-emily-carroll camp-midnight-by-steven-t-seagle wytches-vol-1-by-scott-snyder

Through the Woods by Emily Carroll – A collection of five short stories that all feature the woods. I really recommend reading this at night because it makes the atmosphere so much creepier. The way the wood features in each story is done so creatively. The stories all let you interpret your own meaning. 
Camp Midnight by Steven T. Seagle (writer) & Jason Katzenstein (art) – Sidenote: This is more of a paranormal than a horror. A girl ends up at the wrong summer camp and discovers it’s full of monsters. This has some incredible friendships and is really fun!
Wytches, Vol 1 by Scott Snyder (writer) & Jock (art) – A really creepy take on “witches” where they are seriously evil and disturbing. A family moves to a new house and encounters them. This is really dark and unsettling.


giant-days-vol-1-by-john-allison snotgirl-by-bryan-lee-omalley archie-vol-1-the-new-riverdale-by-mark-waid

Giant Days, Vol 1 by John Allison (writer) & Lissa Treiman (art) – This is one of my new favourite comics. It’s about a group of girls who are starting Uni and the friendship they form. It’s absolutely hilarious and has so many great moments. It’s set in the UK.
Snotgirl #1 by Bryan Lee O’Malley (writer), Leslie Hung (art) – Sidenote: This might become sci-fi, I’m not sure. This is about a girl in her 20’s who is a well known fashion blogger and who also has terrible allergies. There’s like a murder-mystery and a stalker(?) and just other weird things going on.
Archie, Vol 1: The New Riverdale by Mark Waid (writer), Fiona Staples, Annie Wu & Veronica Fish (art) – This is a reboot of the original Archie comics. I never really had any interest in Archie until I heard about this reboot. From what I’ve seen it does a great job of paying homage to the original, whilst updating it to a more modern setting.

If you’ve read any of these or are planning to let me know! Also if you have any recs I’d love to hear them!

Feel free to leave a link to your own TTT so I can drop by.

I hope you’re all having a fantastic day xx


44 thoughts on “Comics & Graphic Novels Without Superheroes // Top Ten Tuesday #18

  1. Great recommendations, I’ve never actually read a comic before but I really want to try enter that world. I’m kinda into superheroes though but I think I will definitely try out the other types which are out there too. I will have to venture to my local library to see if they have a comic section I can check out 😀
    Lovely Post as always Lauren! 🙂


  2. This is a great topic for this week Lauren, and some great recommendations as well (I feel I’ve mentioned this before but I really want to start reading more graphic novels and comics).
    At the moment the only one on your list this week I’ve read is Nimona (which I was really pleased to see made your list as well). I really enjoyed it and I actually have Lumberjanes on my t-read list so hopefully I’ll be able to get around to it soon!
    Great picks for this week Lauren! 😀


  3. I just bought Saga (which is my first graphic novel– well, besides V for Vendetta, but we don’t talk about that) because so many of my friends recommended it. I’ve also been told to read Snotgirl, and I might do it just for the art, haha. I love the style!

    Great list! 🙂


  4. I actually saw Saga on someone else’s TTT earlier and it sounded interesting, I might have to give it a read! It’s been so long since I’ve read a comic or graphic novel that I don’t even know where to start. I’ll definitely be adding some of your recs to my TBR. Great picks! 😊


  5. Great list! I don’t read a lot of graphic novels, mainly because a.) it’s expensive b.) it’s hard to get them where I live. But I really want to get in them too. :/
    Is the Wicked + the Divine the one about rock stars? I’ve heard of awesome things about it.


    1. Thanks! Aw, yeah, I definitely understand that. I always read mine digitally because it’s cheaper and way more convenient, haha.

      Yeah! The humans the Gods come back as are all musicians. I’m not sure how much is focused on them being famous because I’ve only read one volume. It was really good though and the art i stunning.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I love Saga! I just started getting more and more into it with each volume. I haven’t read any of the others on your list, but I wouldn’t mind trying the Killjoys for the sole reason that I’ve always loved MCR and am just curious to see what kind of stuff Gerard Way would write.

    I’m not even sure what genre this would go in, but I loved the first volume of Sex Criminals, but Volume 2 was kind of meh for me, so I haven’t really gotten around to making time for Volume 3 yet. I also enjoyed iZombie for the most part. Have you read either of those?


    1. Saga is amazing. I want to binge read the rest of the volumes, but I don’t want it to end. Killjoys is really good too! If you’ve seen any of the music videos from the Danger Days album it takes place in the same universe.

      Haha, right! I feel like it’s almost magical realism? Or contemporary with a slight sci-fi twist. I’ve read the first single issue and want to read more! It’s a shame that volume 2 wasn’t as good though 😦 and iZombie is on my TBR!


  7. Definitely saving this post for when I finally get over my intimidation and start reading graphic novels! 🙂 This is even better because with the superheroes I was always confused about where to start, but these feel so much less intimidating. Thanks Lauren!


    1. Yay! I definitely recommend starting with Nimona. It’s great if you love fantasy and it’s a stand alone so you don’t need to worry about finding other volumes or issues (although once you read it you’ll probably wish there was more, haha). And the art and story are so much fun.


  8. It’s funny: I’ve stayed away from comics and graphic novels, but once you put up Archie it reminded me that the majority of books I read when I was young were Archie comics! I loved them! Betty, Veronica, Jughead, and Reggie! I can’t believe I haven’t wanted to read them when I got older…it’s like I became an adult and forgot everything fun.
    I used to read Johnny the Homicidal Maniac, Lenore, and Squee. I have an Adventure Time comic my niece was selling at a garage sale. It’s like I’m subconsciously avoiding them! We, no more!!
    Great post!


    1. Aww!! Veronica has become one of my new favourite characters. I definitely have a bit of a crush on Jughead too 😂 Johnny is on on my TBR! And oh man, I LOVE Adventure Time!! I’m such a child 😂 If you liked Archie I definitely recommend giving the reboot a try 🙂


  9. I have read some of the comics you have talked about, I love Saga and Amulet. I still need to catch up on the wicked + the divine even though it’s was getting incredibly confusing at a point…

    You should check out Chew, it has a peculiar premise and it’s incredibly interesting.


  10. Omgosh theses all sounds fabulous and I’m going to go be broke now 😂 I’ve only heard of a few of these but I basically want to read them all haha thanks so much for sharing! 😍


  11. This is SUCH a fantastic compilation of comic book recommendations. I never really know where to start when choosing my next one, so this is awesome for me. I really love the Killjoys comics (and MCR). I actually got a signed copy last year when I met Gerard way, which was surreal. Great list!


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