Draw Your OWN Séance Tea Party!

What better way to celebrate the spooky season than drawing your OWN Séance Tea Party! Check out how creator Reimena Yee and RH Graphic book designer Patrick Crotty brought this beautiful cover to life in this step-by-step visual!

Want to create one of your own?

  1. Grab some paper, pencils, colored pencils, whatever you’d like!
  2. Add in a dose of inspiration (and magic!) G
  3. Get Drawing!

Grab your copy of Séance Tea Party today!

 

 

 

 

 

Random House Graphic Announces a Graphic Novel Celebration Coming This September [Press Release]

Random House Graphic Announces a Graphic Novel Celebration This September

The new graphic novel imprint at Random House Children’s Books is partnering with indie bookstores for themed panels every week.

 

(New York, NY, August 20, 2020)—Random House Graphic is announcing an exciting kickoff to the fall season with “Falling for Graphic Novels,” a series of virtual events in September hosted by five indie bookstores across the United States.

The panels will feature Random House Graphic’s creators and allow attendees to discover and virtually visit new stores around the country. Each panel will focus on a theme in kids and YA comics, allowing readers to immerse themselves in stories of magic and heroes, queer and diverse representation, and even an interactive art class.

The celebration will give attendees an in-depth look at this exciting medium that continues to grow in popularity and show the power and breadth of visual storytelling. The series begins Wednesday, September 2, with a new event each week. You can see the full schedule with links to reserve your place below:

September 2, 2020 (Wednesday) @6PM PT

“Heart Happy! Tales of Friendship, Family, and Fun!”

Featuring Laura Knetzger, Jose Pimienta, and Jeffrey Brown

Hosted by Vroman’s Bookstore (Pasadena, CA)

Moderated by Oliver Sava

Hosted on Crowdcast

Reserve your spot now

Join Random House Graphic for a super-fun panel celebrating friends, family, and fun! We love stories that touch our hearts and leave us with all the feels! Join creators Laura Knetzger (Bug Boys), Jose Pimienta (Suncatcher), and Jeffrey Brown (Once Upon a Space-Time! and Lucy and Andy Neanderthal) as they dive into creating stories filled with humor and good feelings and discuss why graphic novels are the best.

September 10, 2020 (Thursday) @4PM CT

“Random House Graphic Doodle Draw!”

Featuring Mika Song, Kaeti Vandorn, Stephen Shaskan, and Brian Yanish

Hosted by BookPeople (Austin, TX)

Moderated by Alex Lu

Hosted on Zoom

Reserve your spot now

It’s time to doodle draw with Random House Graphic! In this fun and interactive event, meet and draw with some fantastic new graphic novel creators. Join Mika Song (Donut Feed the Squirrels), Kaeti Vandorn (Crabapple Trouble), Stephen Shaskan (Pizza & Taco: Who’s the Best?) and Brian Yanish (Shark and Bot) as they discuss introducing graphic novels to kids. The artists will share how to draw characters from their stories and compete in a doodle-duel! Grab some paper and pencils and join us!

September 16, 2020 (Wednesday) @7PM CT

“Magic and Mayhem: Adventures in Graphic Novels!”

Featuring Sophie Escabasse, Reimena Yee, and Nathan Page and Drew Shannon

Hosted by The Book Stall (Winnetka, IL)

Moderated by Nicole Herviou

Hosted on Crowdcast

Reserve your spot now

Witches! Ghosts! Magic! Oh my! Join a very special event to celebrate magic and mayhem in kids’ and teens’ graphic novels. Creators Sophie Escabasse (Witches of Brooklyn), Reimena Yee (Séance Tea Party), and Nathan Page and Drew Shannon (The Montague Twins: The Witch’s Hand) share why magical, gothic stories are the absolute perfect reads for fall!

September 22, 2020 (Tuesday) @6PM MT

“Celebrating LGBTQ+ Representation in Comics!”

Featuring Trung Le Nguyen, Jessi Zabarsky, and Chad Sell

Hosted by BookBar (Denver, CO)

Moderated by Samantha Puc

Hosted on Crowdcast

Reserve your spot now

Today, queer stories can be found everywhere—especially on the bookshelves of kids and teens! More than ever, readers are able to see themselves and their identities reflected in fantastic stories. Join creators Jessi Zabarsky (Witchlight), Chad Sell (Doodleville), and Trung Le Nguyen (the upcoming The Magic Fish) as they discuss a range of fantastic graphic novels celebrating LGBTQ+ identities. 

September 27, 2020 (Sunday) @2PM ET

“RH Graphic: Pick Your Hero!”

Featuring Judd Winick, Mark Siegel, J. C. Phillipps, and John Gallagher

Hosted by Books of Wonder (New York, NY)

Moderated by Mike Avila

Hosted on Crowdcast

Reserve your spot now

It’s time to pick your hero! Join Random House Graphic as we celebrate stories about heroes—from traveling through epic worlds to alien boys landing on earth to fighting evil unicorns and superhero cats—there are so many great graphic novels for kids to jump into! Join creators Judd Winick (HILO series), Mark Siegel (5 Worlds series), J. C. Phillipps (Pacey Packer: Unicorn Tracker), and John Gallagher (the upcoming Max Meow: Cat Crusader) to learn more about their exciting new adventures!

Random House Graphic is an imprint of Random House Children’s Books dedicated to the growth of graphic novels in the publishing industry. Launched in January 2020, Random House Graphic publishes graphic novels of all genres for ages four and up. To learn more about Random House Graphic or to find your next read, visit rhkidsgraphic.com or follow @RHKidsGraphic on Twitter and Instagram.

Random House Children’s Books (rhcbooks.com) is the world’s largest English-language children’s trade book publisher. Creating books for toddlers through young adult readers in all formats, from board books to activity books to picture books, novels, and nonfiction, the imprints of Random House Children’s Books bring together award-winning authors and illustrators, world-famous franchise characters, and multimillion-copy series. Random House Children’s Books is a division of Penguin Random House LLC.

What Are You Reading This August?

It’s summertime and we know what that means–summer reading! 

Here are just a few recommendations for your TBR list this month: 

Mood: Family Drama!

Our Rec: STEPPING STONES from Lucy Knisley

New home, new family, new sisters, new drama! This fantastic middle-grade debut from the amazing Lucy Knisley is perfect for any reader who is going through a tough place, and needs a cathartic release! Following her parents divorce, young Jen is moved to the country with her mom and her mom’s new boyfriend–and he comes with two daughters of his own! Learning to navigate a new home is hard enough, but having to find your voice and place in a new family is so much harder. But Jen will find her strength as she discovers her uniqueness is what makes her special.

Jump onto this new series now!

 

Mood: Hilarious Space Hijinks!

Our Rec: ONCE UPON A SPACE-TIME! by Jeffrey Brown

Let’s be real… we could all use a break from planet earth right now. And that’s just what this hilarious new book delivers! When Jide and Petra are selected to join their new alien classmates on a intergalactical research mission to Mars, they have no idea that things will soon turn to chaos when they accidentally take off an adventure with no adult supervision. Hilarious adventures will have every reader laughing hysterically as you read this next great story!

Take off on mission SPACE TIME now!

 

Mood: Adventures with your furry BFF!

Our Rec: ASTER AND THE ACCIDENTAL MAGIC from Thom Pico and Karensac

Aster is all of us. A girl who loves her video games and living in the big city. So when her parents move her to the middle of NOWHERE you can imagine our reaction–UGH! The worst! But soon she’ll meet a weird lady with a heard of dogs, and one of those dogs will become her BFF, and soon she’ll meet a trickster who will let her talk to her dog–but only in dog language. And this is just the beginning.

Get ready for hilarious adventures of a girl, her dog, and magic gone wrong!

Stay tuned for more recommendations in the coming months!

Venture into KERRY AND THE KNIGHT OF THE FOREST with Andi Watson!

Andi Watson is a British cartoonist, writer, and illustrator who has been nominated for two Eisners, a Harvey, and a British Comics Award. He is known for his fantastic works including GlisterPrincess Decomposia and Count SpatulaGum Girl.

We are so excited for this new book! Can you share the inspiration for Kerry and the Knight of the Forest?

Inspiration for any book is like a recipe–you put a bunch of the best ingredients together and hopefully something wonderful comes out of the oven at the end. Sometimes its a little crispy around the edges but that’s part of the charm.

One of the big influences on Kerry was the short animated film Hedgehog in the Fog directed by Yuriy Norshteyn. It’s a poetic and atmospheric folk tale from 1975. Hedgehog sets off on a journey to go meet their pal Bear Cub and encounters various creatures and hazards along the way. I love the textures of the design and the eerie atmosphere. Also Hedgehog isn’t very brave, I liked the idea of having a vulnerable hero. I didn’t want Kerry to solve problems with violence, rather he has to use wit and empathy to win the day.

I’ve always had an interest in fairy tales and wanted some classic moments from those stories woven into the Kerry book. There are talking animals, a spooky forest and a quest to save ailing parents. I wanted to give it the feel of an actual fairy tale without it being based on one.

 

Throughout the story Kerry is often seen as very trusting, sometimes to his detriment. Why do you think this is an important characteristic trait for Kerry to have?

A lot of the story is about who to trust and who to believe. Who’s telling the truth and who’s lying. It’s a contemporary concern. All day we’re bombarded with news and information, particularly online. A lot of it is unsourced, toxic, and harmful. It’s an important life skill to learn which sources to trust and which to dismiss. Kerry has to go through the same process. He makes mistakes but learns from them along the way.

Going back to the idea of bravery, I think Kerry is very brave in trusting in others. To open yourself up to possibly being betrayed, tricked or lied to isn’t easy. Being vulnerable requires a lot of courage. I also think it’s not seen as a particularly masculine trait. Often the hero of this sort of story is a lone wolf who defeats their enemies through physical feats. I try and put a little of myself into my books, ask how would I react in any given situation. Or how I should react. I’m someone who sits in my studio all day writing and drawing imaginary friends. I should act more like Kerry and try and make more real world friends!

 

What new themes or ideas did you want to bring to the hero’s journey? Were there any particular pieces of the story that you found particularly rewarding or challenging?  

As I’ve mentioned, the easy solution to any problem, particularly in comics, is to hit it until it stops moving. Kerry faces different kinds of opposition, whether in the shape of creatures or in the environment. I wanted to have as much variety as possible within the confines of the forest setting. So I take Kerry underground and through a swamp. The fun parts are always bringing the characters to life, giving them a back story and a reason for the reader to root for them. It was fun finding ways for the Waystone to be as expressive as a big boulder with an eye can be. It’s a case of making a good use of the comics form, having a rock look sad, angry and so on. There’s also a seedling character who is a very simple design and I enjoyed giving it as wide a variety of expressions as I could.

 

With regard to your art, what or who are your influences/inspiration? Do you have any tips for readers who are eager to become artists as well?

My influences and inspirations are varied. I’ve been around awhile, so I’ve picked up and left behind quite a few. I read prose as much as I can. I love films, reading plays, podcasts, museums and fine art, music, comics, design…I keep my eyes and ears open for new things. Inspiration can come from anywhere and it can take a long while for it to surface. I first saw the Hedgehog in the Fog on TV by accident a couple of decades ago. I thought it was cool but I never thought, “I have to do something exactly like that.” Rather it lay buried in my memory and inspired a bunch of different ideas for a story of my own. Also, art that I dislike can be just as inspiring as art I love. If it makes me think or makes me angry then it can spark new ideas or revisit old ones from a different angle.

I absolutely believe that art can be taught, it’s certainly been the case for me, but what can’t be taught is the pleasure you get from drawing or writing or the playing of a musical instrument. If you enjoy being creative then that tends to be it’s own reward. Do stuff you enjoy, whether as a hobby or as a profession. Drawing or painting or crafting will be rewarding throughout your life if you remember it’s supposed to be fun.

As I kid I was totally happy lying on my stomach in the living room with any old paper that came to hand and a box of crummy felt tip pens. Not to try and impress anyone, not because I was better at it than the people who designed the X-Wing fighters (because I definitely wasn’t) and not because it was my job, but because I was having a blast.

Anyone can be a cartoonist, all you need is some paper and something to draw with. Put your ideas down on paper, no matter how silly you might think they are. Done that? Cool, now you’re a cartoonist too!

 

Can you share some of your favorite graphic novels/comics that readers should be checking out?

Glancing over my shoulder at the bookshelves I can see: Aster and the Accidental Magic by Thom Pico and Karensac, Princess Knight by Osamu Tezuka, The Little Vampire by Joann Sfar, the Hilda books by Luke Thompson and for older readers Nausicaä of the Valley of Wind by Hayao Miyazaki. I need to read more comics myself so if anyone one would like to recommend their favourite titles, please do.

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