Engaging Methuen Readers

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Anxiety and Depression Comics

Feeling down? Read a comic book! Specifically, read one of these comic books about depression and anxiety. Hey, you’re not going through it alone!

Also, if your sadness and nervousness have been bugging you for a while, therapy can be really helpful. About 20% of Americans are in therapy at any given time. It’s a really common, popular, and effective way to manage your mood when it becomes overwhelming! Psychology Today has a great directory of therapists where you can search by location and filter by what issue you’re having, your particular type of insurance, your preferred gender, and more. We encourage you to check them out.

36005028. sx318 Anxiety Is Really Strange by Steve Haines

This functions as a good first anxiety book for a teenager or older child. It lays out how anxiety works from a physiological standpoint, especially in the nervous system. It’s part of a series that includes a similar examination of trauma.

9920411Depresso, Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Embrace Being Bonkers by Brick

Tom Freeman, loosely based on Brick, is a mess. Anti-depressants are turning him into a zombie and alternative therapies are messing up his life. Still, if there’s a way out of depression, he’ll find it!

Cover image for Hyperbole and a half :Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem, and Other Things That Happened by Allie Brosh

Brosh is known as an Internet-famous humorist, but she also chronicles her struggles with depression in her signature MS Paint style. If you’re a fan of her blog, you’ll love the book, too.

Cover image for Just peachy :Just Peachy by Holly Chisholm

Anxiety and depression are a team in this lighthearted look at mental health. (The tall one is depression, and the winged one – well, you get the idea.) Includes a list of resources at the end!


40538944. sx318 Kind of Coping: An Illustrated Look at Life with Anxiety by Maureen Marzi Wilson

Panic attacks and social awkwardness are par for the course in this endearing biography of obsessive fear. Join Marzi on a surprisingly humorous journey through pointless terror!

1117355. sx318 My Depression by Elizabeth Swados

Educational and honest, this book talks frankly about the triggers, treatments, and trials of someone who personally struggles with the condition of depression. Like Depresso, it deals heavily with the side effects of medication.

39296124. sx318 Super Chill: A Year of Living Anxiously by Adam Ellis

You may know Adam Ellis through his webcomics, which enjoy very wide popularity across the Internet. Here, he discusses his anxiety, which is sometimes crippling and always tough to deal with.


27039276. sx318 When Anxiety Attacks by Terian Koscik

Here’s one where therapy really, really helps! Discussing coping mechanisms and “I” statements, this book is a great resource for people who aren’t sure if therapy is right for them. (hint: if you or your family or your friends think that therapy might be right for you, you might want to try therapy!)

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What’s Coming Out On Free Comic Book Day

May the Fourth be with you! This upcoming combo Star Wars and Free Comic Book Day is going to be an extravaganza of geekery. Schedule a trip to your local comic book shop, but first, read up on some of the hottest free titles hitting the ground next month. Click on the images on the right to go read the books that relate to the comics that you can get for free on May the 4th.



Before you read the Season 3 Riverdale teaser, be sure to pick up a copy of Archie, volume 1 by Mark Waid and Fiona Staples.





Deadly Class

FCBD_2019_Deadly_ClassBefore they had a morbid, violent TV show, the Deadly Class was a morbid, violent comic book! Start with Reagan Youth.







This is a take-off on Sheets, a comic about a girl who must make friends with her household ghost. Get a copy from the library!





My Favorite Thing Is Monsters


The Ignatz Award-winning graphic novel from Fantagraphics is available through the Nevins Library. However, a one-shot will also be part of the Free Comic Book Day festivities.






FCBD_2019_LumberjanesAnyone who hasn’t been reading Lumberjanes has been missing out. Be sure to grab this free comic about girl power and friendship, but first, read Beware the Kitten Holy to get acquainted with the series.






Animals can talk, but that doesn’t mean that they have anything nice to say to us. Check out the graphic novel before you pick up the free version of this fascinating comic!





The Overstreet Guide To Collecting


Don’t be fooled by the cover! This Free Comic Book Day version of the classic collectible guide is all business. If you want to know which free comics you should be picking up for your retirement portfolio, then check out the full Overstreet Guide.




Lucy and Andy Neanderthal


Life’s pretty boring in the Neolithic age…except that it’s really not! Join Andy and Lucy on an all-ages adventure through humankind’s past, complete with mammoths, saber-toothed cats, and more. Get the book first so you know these charming kids’ characters.


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I Hate Fairyland

AKA “F**k Fairyland,” this obscenity-laced (well, fake obscenity-laced) gorefest is a shoo-in for fans of Deadpool and Tank Girl.

First of all, we have Gertrude. When Gert was six, she made a thoughtless wish and was instantly (and traumatically) transported to Fairyland, where the colors are brighter, the queen is made of clouds, and the only way out is an unfindable key. Which, of course, Gert is supposed to find. After 27 years of this nonsense, Gert has had enough. Maybe she never developed anger management skills. Maybe the diet of constant sugar has worn her personality down to a blackened nub. Maybe 27 years of being a six-year-old would drive anyone crazy. Regardless of the reason, Gert has become an unchecked homicidal terror who slaughters the fair folk with gleeful abandon. The queen is desperate to be rid of her…by any means necessary.

This book is a simple joy. It is also critically important to the safety of every living human. Every American should be given a copy on the day of their birth. It should be required reading in elementary, middle and high schools. College courses should be taught. Degrees should be given. This book is the blueprint for surviving a trip to a magical land. Not The Chronicles of Narnia. Not Harry Potter. This.

Allow me to explain.

Since time out of memory, fairies, which are amoral, shapeshifting beings made of pure magic, have been tricking humans. Sometimes, they have done this for fun, as you’ll see in the case of a sprite like Puck of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Other times, they settle for profit or political gain, as you’ll see in the case of Morgana le Fey of the Arthurian legends. But to a fairy, they’re fickle and easily distracted.

Except when they really, really want to get something done.

Remember, these are beings of 100% magic we’re talking about. They have no reason to care about cash because they can magic it up out of thin air. Human lifespans are blinks to them. When they’re even remotely interested in something that happens in the mortal world, that means there’s something up. Since we humans aren’t beings of pure magic, odds are decent that we have no idea what the hell is really going on. In the case of I Hate Fairyland, everyone in the magical kingdom wants Gert to find the key and return to the human world…but why?

Why bring a little human girl to Fairyland in the first place? To open the door to Earth, of course! Why can’t a fairy find the key and open the door themselves? Because they are magically inhibited from doing so, obvs. Why is that?

They lost a war. To us.

Look around you. Notice the lack of talking flies and capering fauns. Yet they feature prominently in our literature and, according to this invaluable tome, know nearly everything about Earth. Once, they were familiar with human society, enough to adopt sartorial traditions, lingustic foibles, and a taste for refined sugar. Now, they are gone without a trace. So is all their mischief: very little magically-enhanced gold-hiding, boot-switching or baby-stealing happens these days. As the world became increasingly wealthy, shod and conscious of child safety, even small mischiefs would have become a hitch in the system. That is why humanity defeated fairykind and locked them up in the disgustingly, ironically, maddeningly cute and harmless Fairyland. Fierce fairy warriors? Reduced to a stoner punchline. Their noble queen? Going stir-crazy. Their denizens? Confined. Jailed. Limited…to muffin-chomping Fairyland. And only a human can free them.

Free them to wreak their sweet, sweet revenge on the species that trapped them in Hell.

Gertie may seem awful. She may seem out of control. But by dramatically failing in her quest time and time again, she has saved humanity from a neon rainbow nightmare. By causing the doom of hundreds of fairies, Gert has cut down on the army that waits for a single gullible child to open the way. By distracting the queen with sheer hatred, she has once again saved us all. Gert is a hero.

Let’s treat her as such.

Also Read:

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Tank Girl, Book One by Jamie Hewlett and Alan Martin

She drives a tank and does not care about your pain. She’s Tank Girl! From terrorizing her kangaroo boyfriend to blowing up your mom, she’s the best action the Outback has seen since the Apocalypse.




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Deadpool v. 1 by Gerry Duggan and Brian Posehn

The Merc with a Mouth is back again…and again…and again! Let’s amend that: the unkillable Merc with a Mouth is back to drive you crazy, win your heart, and make the chimichangas.




Comics with Pride

This June has proven to be a hard one for the LGBT community. We expected to be celebrating a year of marriage equality, but instead, we mourn the deaths of fifty young LGBT people.

Even as we do, our straight friends and family stand with us. One gunman destroyed many lives, but how many have been saved by supportive family and friends? How many lost people have accepted the rope thrown to them by thousands of brave others who dared to come out of the closet, or to break social convention and accept their loved ones, and show the world that we could live together peacefully?

We need to mourn this atrocity. But as we do, let’s also remember the hordes of blood donors, the piles of sympathy flowers and the vigils, not to mention the hundreds asking when and where they can donate to a victim support fund. When bad things happen, focus on the good people who turn up. They’re the ones who count.

And now for some books.

Fun Home by Alison Bechdel (also Dykes to Watch Out For)

Growing up in rural Pennsylvania, Alison Bechdel’s world is tiny, and it is ruled absolutely by her tyrannical father. When she grows up, goes to college and comes out, she discovers a shocking family secret: her father has been quietly dating his male high school students for years.


Stuck Rubber Baby by Howard Cruse (also Wendel)

Toland Polk and Ginger are great together, except for one thing: Toland is gay. As he supports his African-American friends in the midst of the Civil Rights struggle of the 1960s, Toland also wrestles with his own identity.


Blue is the Warmest Color by Julie Maroh

The day Clementine catches sight of Emma by chance is a fateful one that touches off a powerful, tempestuous romance. As their relationship grows, the two women struggle with Clementine’s family’s rejection of their lesbian daughter.


Pregnant Butch by A.K. Summers

Ever heard that lesbians are do-it-yourselfers? Teek and Vee prove that there’s a kernel of truth to every stereotype! When the stars align, the couple decide that Teek, a masculine-presenting woman, will be the one to have their son. Through the identity dust-up that follows, Teek learns that being pregnant and being butch aren’t exclusive.


Kaptara by Chip Zdarsky and Kagan McLeod

Absurd and funny, this book follows the adventures of Keith, gay Earth-man scientist who isn’t terrific at his job. When he crash-lands on the barbarian planet Kaptara, he immediately proclaims himself Keith, Prince of the Dance Floor and chickens out of a quest. Which he ends up going on anyway. Hilarity ensues.


Infinite Loop by Pierrick Colinet and Else Charri

Teddy’s job is to fix time anomolies. Unfortunately, one of those anomolies is a beautiful woman named Ano. Will Teddy defy the laws of time and space to be with the girl of her dreams?



The Wicked + the Divine by Kieren Gillan

The gods are among us, and they’re ready to rock. When the deities of old are reborn as pop stars, the world falls in love with them even as they fall into bed with one another. But in a short while, it’ll all end in flames…sooner for some than others. As tensions heat up, gender outlaw Lucifer may be the first god to be tried for murder.


Wuvable Oaf by Ed Luce

Oaf’s a big, strong guy. You’d better not mess with his kittens. (He loves those kittens.) Don’t get in the way of his search for love in San Francisco’s alt rock scene either. But do read this book, because whatever else Oaf is, he’s inherently wuvable.


Flutter, v. 1: Hell can wait by Jennie Wood

Lily wants the girl, but the girl’s hard to get. Using her shapeshifting powers, she becomes a boy…but learns that pretending to be someone she’s not doesn’t solve her problems.


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Spotlight on Ebooks: Biblioboard


To enjoy Biblioboard, you really have to use a tablet. Or the screen of your at-work computer, if your boss is sympathetic to the plight of the graphic novel enthusiast. Biblioboard’s primary strength is comics – tons and tons of comics. There are many lesser-known, but roundly entertaining, indie titles from publishers like Milk Shadow Books and Markosia, and it’s possible to do a great deal of satisfying discovery in those alone. However, this platform also contains a great deal of material from one of the biggies: Dark Horse contributes Hellboy, various adventures of the Goon, and the entirety of Lone Wolf and Cub, to name just a little bit.

The Goon describing his sophistication.

The Goon

Frankly, there’s no way to read this many comics in a lifetime. (The Conan back issues alone would take a hundred years.) This is the untouched mother lode of great, free, fantastic comics, and it’s there for the taking. Biblioboard’s sign-in is easy and its interface is fairly easy to search. Items are organized into collections – Dark Horse has one of its own – and browsing the catalog feels a lot like riffling through a much more functional, pretty, and useful version of Pinterest. And yes, you can also pin the treasures you find.

Even non-comics  is visually focused. In addition to comics and classics, Biblioboard features scans of artworks from Charles Lewis Bartholomew to N.C.Wyeth. Various collections are focused on Common Core education, tying books and artwork into classwork. It features classics, self-published work, and a neat link at the top right of the page where independent authors can submit their own work of genius for inclusion in the collection. Or, alternatively, where a professor can submit their self-published textbook or workbook for use and inclusion in their courses. With a platform as versatile and interactive as this one, it’s hard to imagine a limit to the possibilities.

Biblioboard is worth more than a look. It’s worth a good, old-fashioned browse. Find some time to check out the comic book collection, at least. It’s worth six or seven hours of your busy day.

Summer Reading for Teens!

By now, summer vacation is in full swing. Hopefully your days have been filled with beaches, barbeques, and trips to sights unseen so far. But it’s time to face the facts: sometimes summer vacation can be boring. For every action-packed day spent swimming in the pool with your friends, there’s another where you’re lying on the couch with absolutely nothing to do.

Lucky for you, the library is there to help on those summer blues kind of days. We still have plenty of programming for teens in grades 7-12. This year’s theme, “Unmask!” has a focus on heroes. For those of you interested in super heroes and comic books we have a program all about the history of comic books. Local Geekgal, Sarah Hodge-Wetherbe, who has spoken at several Anime Boston events, will be visiting us at Nevins to tell us all about the history of comic books and how our favorite super heroes came to be. To find out all there is to know check out her Faster than a Speeding Bullet: A brief history of comics program on Monday, July 20th at 1pm.

And if you attend that program you’ll be all the more prepared for our Hero Trivia on Friday, July 31st and 1pm. This is the time to put your knowledge to the test. Teams will compete in several rounds of trivia in subjects ranging from comic books to real life heroes. There might be a few added questions based on the Faster than a Speeding Bullet program so it wouldn’t hurt to go to both! The winning team will earn bragging rights and a special prize.

For those otaku teens out there we have a couple of programs to check out. The first is a Manga Drawing Workshop on Wednesday, July 29th at 7pm. Local artist, Shauna Leva will be returning to teach the style of Japanese manga art. Whether you’re a beginner or have been drawing for a while now, Shauna will have the skills and tips you need to improve. Then on Tuesday, August 11th  at 6pm we’re having a Manga Madness party. We’ll have Japanese snacks, games, music and anime music video showings – everything the ultimate anime & manga fan could dream of!

All summer long you can attend any of these programs (and more!) and be rewarded one raffle ticket towards our grand prizes, all located at the front desk at the library. You can also win more tickets by reading. For every book you read this summer, fill out a review slip (also found at the main desk) and turn it in for another raffle ticket. Then, we wrap up the Summer Reading program with our Finale Party on Thursday, August 13th at 2pm all of the prizes will be raffled off. You don’t have to be at the party to win, but you’ll miss out on games, more chances to win tickets and a junk food buffet!

So take care of those boring summer lulls by coming to the library and joining these awesome programs. Make sure you register for them at under the calendar of events! If you have any questions feel free to contact me (Amy!) at or 978-686-4080 ext. 35