Comic Book Collections for Libraries
by Bryan D. Fagan and Jody Condit Fagan
January 2011, 162pp, 7x10
1 volume, Libraries Unlimited

Paperback: 978-1-59884-511-2
$45, £34, 38€, A65
eBook Available: 978-1-59884-512-9
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

Libraries have embraced literary graphic novels while largely overlooking popular comic book titles. Yet some 44 percent of 9- to 11-year-old girls read comic books, while almost 60 percent of boys in the same age range thrill to the exploits of comic book heroes and villains. This book can help libraries take advantage of this overlooked opportunity.

This book will help librarians extend literary graphic novel collections to attract a large, untapped group of comic book readers with a sure-to-be-popular comic book collection.

Do comic books belong in libraries? Absolutely—as Comic Book Collections for Libraries makes very clear. This illustrated guide defines the role of comic books in the modern library, provides a thorough grounding in the subject for beginners, and suggests new ideas for those already familiar with these perennial reader favorites.

The book begins by introducing the structure of the comic book, industry players, and genres. The bulk of the guide, however, is comprised of actionable advice on such things as creating and maintaining the collection, cataloging for effective access, and promoting the collection, including how to feature comics with other library materials, such as movies and games. Drawing on the authors’ experience, the volume answers numerous other questions as well. How can you tell which titles are age-appropriate for your library? Which titles are popular? How do you include characters that will appeal to diverse reader groups? Complete with checklists and a rich array of examples, this easy-to-use work can make every librarian a superhero.


  • 60 A–Z entries on the comic book industry, publishers, and creators
  • Helpful lists of recommended comic book titles, many of which are not usually found in libraries
  • Numerous tables, comic book images, and illustrations
  • A glossary of comic book-specific terms
  • A title list actually used to begin a comic book collection at James Madison University
  • Bibliographies for each chapter, plus a list of more than 50 web resources
Bryan D. Fagan is a freelance writer. He has an MLS degree from the University of Maryland.

Jody Condit Fagan is associate professor and content interfaces coordinator at James Madison University Libraries and Educational Technologies, Harrisonburg, VA. Fagan has written numerous peer-reviewed articles. Her first book, Web Project Management for Academic Libraries with Jennifer A. Keach, was published in 2009.

Together, Bryan and Jody Fagan created and now maintain a popular comic book collection at James Madison University.


"This thorough guide focuses on creating a core collection for adults, though much of it will also be useful for youth librarians. . . . Armed with this book, librarians should feel confident about knowledgeably creating and maintaining a successful comic-book collection."—School Library Journal, May 1, 2011

"A highly useful and highly recommended read for any librarian who wants to create greater interest in their facility."—Midwest Book Review, March 1, 2011
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