Image/Skybound Launch YA And Middle Readers Imprint Sky Comet And Announce First Three Graphic Novels

by Olly MacNamee

Image/Skybound have announced that it too is getting into the Young Adult and Middle Readers publishing game with Skybound Comet. Launching this July, Sky Comet reveals its starting line-up of original graphic novels too:

Clementine Book One, will be the first of a trilogy of graphic novels set in the world of Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead, from award-winning writer/artist Tillie Walden (Spinning, On A Sunbeam). Then in September there will be Everyday Hero Machine Boy from creators Tri Vuong and Irma Kniivila and also Sea Serpent’s Heir Book One, a fantasy trilogy from creators Mairghread Scott (Star Wars: Resistance, Guardians of the Galaxy) and Pablo Tunica  (TMNT Universe), in October 2022. That’s quite the gap, so do expect more titles to be announced over the coming months.

Here’s the covers and synopsis for each announced book:

“It’s a new beginning for Clementine, the star of the bestselling video game franchise TELLTALE’S THE WALKING DEAD, in Clementine Book One, as she’s back on the road, looking to put her traumatic past behind her and forge new path all her own. But when she comes across an Amish teenager named Amos with his head in the clouds, the unlikely pair journeys North to an abandoned ski resort in Vermont, where they meet up with a small group of teenagers attempting to build a new, walker-free settlement. As friendship, rivalry, and romance begin to blossom amongst the group, the harsh winter soon reveals that the biggest threat to their survival…might be each other. ”   

Walden added about this new title:

“Starting out with a character like Clementine is both a huge responsibility and joy. Clementine is a person who brings adventure with her everywhere she goes, and the more I thought about it, the more I wanted to take her beyond the world of the games, to somewhere new and thrilling (like the top of a mountain!). She is a force and drawing and writing her story has been one of the best experiences in my cartooning life.”

And don’t forget that Clementine makes her first comic book appearance in Skybound X #1, available in comic shops and at digital providers on July 7th, 2021 if you wnant to catch a taste of what the graphic novel will be all about.

“In Everyday Hero Machine Boy, the titular hero falls from the sky to the domed city of Mega 416, leaving a wake of destruction in his path…until Karate Grandpa is able to turn on his heart. Now, Machine Boy wants nothing more than to become a hero! Whether he is fighting giant bugs in the school’s basement, rescuing cats from trees, or making the perfect spaghetti sauce, Machine Boy is always looking for the best way to help others. But when his heart begins to interact dangerously with other debris from space, Machine Boy wonders if he can be a power for good after all.” 

Vuong explains the inspirations behind Everyday Hero Machine Boy:

Machine Boy was initially inspired by ’80s anime, 16-bit video games, and kung fu movies but as Irma and I delved deeper into his world, we found ourselves telling a story about the pain and joys of growing up. Hopefully it touches on those collective childhood memories and experiences that we all seem to share.”

Machine Boy makes his first comic book appearance in Skybound X #2, available in comic shops and at digital providers on July 14th, 2021. Hmm, I see a pattern here.

“The end of the world is coming in Sea Serpent’s Heir Book One as a teen named Aella on Kinamen Isle spends her days fishing and minding her aunts, dreaming of life beyond the horizon. Everything changes, however, when she awakens an ancient evil within herself as it’s revealed that she’s the reincarnation of Xir, the serpent that almost destroyed the world. Worse yet, a fanatical religious organization has arrived on Kinamen Isle in search of Xir.”

Scott gives us more on Aella, the titular Sea Serpent’s Heir:

“Adolescence is about finding yourself. Like finding out you’re destined to destroy the world, or that your whole village is made up of blood-thirsty pirates, or that… Okay, adolescence isn’t usually like this. There are a lot of books about young women discovering they’re destined to save the world. This book is about a young woman who learns she’s destined to destroy it, and what exactly she does next.”

As for the art style you’ll expect, Tunica fills us in on his mix of various inspirations:

“In this strange world, with its stormy nights, tropical islands and ruthless magical pirates, I see echoes of the darkest Jim Henson or Arthur Rackham but I also see the mystery of the first kisses and the tenderness of mythological beasts. And if I mention the horror of the dark and the curiosity about magic, it is because that is precisely the feeling of growing up.”

Aella makes her first comic book appearance in Skybound X #4, available in comic shops and at digital providers on July 28th, 2021. So, if you want to catch a first look all three new characters you may want to pick up the weekly Skybound X comic book series this July. A book celebrating the first ten years of Skybound while also setting down roots for the next decade to come too.

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