Last Saturday (May 2nd) was Free Comic Book Day! In celebration of comics and graphic novels, some suggestions:
- Do you read graphic novels/comics? Why do/don’t you enjoy them?
I do read graphic novels, though not all that often.
- How would you describe the difference between "graphic novel" and "comic"? Is there a difference at all?
My sense has always been that a graphic novel is novel-like narrative told in comic form. Comic strips are what appears in the Sunday newspaper. Comics are the serials that people buy at comic book stores (new issues show up on Wednesdays, I believe). I don't really consider previously published comics collected and republished in a book form a graphic novel, despite the fact that the comic industry tends to refer to these collections as graphic novels.
- Say you have a friend who’s never encountered graphic novels. Recommend some titles you consider landmark/"canonical".
I'd usually say Maus (I recently re-read the books and posted about them), though I've also recommended Ethel & Ernest, Persepolis, and Joann Sfar's books depending on who's asking.
ETA: Lockwood also has a nice graphic novel collection, all housed together and easy to browse. When talking to people on campus about graphic novels, I point them in that direction. I've also been making use of the collection myself. Right now I have Fun Home by Alison Bechdel checked out.