USA Today picks HARK! and DEATH-RAY among the best of 2011

“Highlighting the best graphic novels of 2011” / USA Today / David Colton, John Geddes and Brian Truitt / December 16, 2011

5. The Death-Ray, by Daniel Clowes (Drawn and Quarterly, $19.95)
Fans of alternative comics will love this latest work by Clowes, creator of Eightball and Ghost World. Here an awkward (to say the least), teen decides to have superpowers, and the result is a true monster from the Id — with a ray gun to match his attitude. Winner of multiple awards, Clowes once again shows he is a master of current-day absurdity — with heart.

2. Hark! A Vagrant, by Kate Beaton (Drawn and Quarterly, $19.95)
You'll cry over this hilarious collection of webcomics but for an altogether different reason. Beaton winningly takes snarky shots at and explores the absolute absurdity of historical figures, literature and pop culture with strips titled "Dude Watchin' with the Brontes" and "Suffragettes in the City." Hipster World War II battalion? Check. Monks writing fan fiction? Check. Jules Verne crushing on Edgar Allan Poe teen-girl style? Check. A summit of Canadian historical figures including hockey legend Maurice Richard? Check. Not only will you laugh out loud, your guffaws will disturb the neighbors.

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