I first heard of the Guardian Princesses via Black Girl Nerds. With birthdays and gift-giving holidays coming up, and nieces and nephews of the targeted age range for these books, I knew these were books I needed to check out and share.
Written by Adrienne M. Roehrich, Manager of Editorial Services
It’s that time of year again: shopping for the holidays. Regardless of what holiday you are shopping for your geeky loved ones (or yourself), GeekGirlCon has some ideas for you. Last year we provided many ideas on Geeky Gifts on a Budget, Tabletop Gifting, Geeky Gifts for Kids, and Last Minute Gift Ideas. We’ve got a few more ideas for you this year, to find that perfect gift for your geeky gift recipient (or to add to your own wishlist.)
Someone else knew my love of board games and chemistry, and sent me links to Compounded, the tagline of which borrows from the American Chemical Society’s old “better living through chemistry” with “Better Gaming Through Chemistry.”
Speaking of board games, one I picked up as a gift for some geeky kids I know from GeekGirlCon Exhibitor’s Hall this year is Bhaloidam. In the words of the creators: “With it you’ll spin character-driven stories and weave them together with the stories of your friends. You’ll exert your influence upon the storyworlds you create together, shaping its future and controlling your characters’ destinies as you perform their successes and their failures.”
For a smart nephling, I got Angry Birds: Furious Forces, which I heard about from a physicist. This is a great book for the game lover who also has an interest in physics or a physics lover with an interest in games.
Another of my geeky family will be receiving some items from CuteBricks, another vendor at GeekGirlCon ‘13. (You may be catching on that one of my favorite places to shop for gifts is at conventions.) These little LEGO bricks in various shapes as necklaces, bracelets, earrings, and cufflinks are super cute!
For a good friend whose birthday was long past, I got her a Surly from SurlyRamics—a matching pi necklace and earrings (not exact one pictured.) I also got myself a little gift—one of the new sparkly Surly’s, a dragonfly.
Comic books were once a child’s domain. Now not so much. Today’s Batman and Iron Man are aimed more for teenagers and, let’s face it, those more in their 30s than for those beginning their love for the graphic novel*. You may look fondly on your younger self, sitting around following the adventures of Wonder Woman, the X-Men, or Archie. But where do you start for your child?
The following 10 comic books are ones that I’d recommend for children ages 7-12, who might find a story to love. And, parents, you just might love them too.
I Kill Giants by Joe Kelly and J. M. Ken Niimura
There are monsters in every child’s life, but one girl, Barbara Thorson, is ready to fight them. And she’s preparing the world for her battle or at least trying. Barbara’s tale touches your heart, especially as she fights her demons: both real and imaginary. Between Kelly’s thoughtful writing and Niimura’s beautiful art, they bring Barbara’s story to life. Let I Kill Giants warm your heart.
Mouse Guard: Fall 1152 by David Peterson
One of my favorite comic books about the bravery of small things: in this case, mice. Mouse Guard draws you in with its beautiful art and keeps you around with its big heart. The Mouse Guard valiantly defends all mice territories from threats like eagles, weasels, foxes, crabs, and sometimes even larger creatures. Despite their size, the mice risk their lives for each other and work together to bring down their larger enemies. Soon Saxon, Kenzie, and Liam will be your new friends. Buy Mouse Guard.
Runaways Vol. 1: Pride & Joy by Brian K. Vaughan and Adrian Alphona
Ever wonder what would happen if you found out your parents were super villains? That’s just what happens to these six teenagers (plus, one pet velociraptor). After finding out that their parents play for the dark side, they run away and plot to stop their parents. Also Vaughan doesn’t forget that they need practical things like food and shelter. How would you react to finding out that your parents are evil? Join the Runaways on their epic adventures.
Dolltopia by Abby Denson
I pretty much cannot stop raving about Denson’s Dolltopia. As a little girl, I played with dolls, mostly Barbies, Ninja Turtles, Batman, or Star Trek ones, all the time. There were extensive narrations in my head and certainly, ones like Denson’s book, that defied heteronormative gender identities. But before you go thinking Dolltopia might be too much of an intense genderqueer narrative for a child, it’s just subversive enough. It is, at its crux, a story drawn in all black and white and hot pink about a group of dolls that escape humans’ homes to find themselves. Whomever they may be. And there’s nothing stronger to give a child to read, but a book that tells them that they will be loved, no matter who they are. Get some subversive fun in your life.
Rose and Isabel by Ted Mathot
Take a historical trip back to the Civil War with Rose and Isabel, two sisters who don’t sit idly by while their three brothers go off to fight with the Union soldiers. But Rose and Isabel are no ordinary women; they come from a long line of warrior women. And even though they were taught pacifism and kindness all their lives, neither will tolerate the loss of their family. Travel back in time to meet these strong ladies.
Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane Vol. 1: Super Crush by Sean McKeever and Takeshi Miyazawa
Ever want to know what Mary Jane thought of Spider-Man when they were in high school? Now you can walk the halls with Mary Jane, Peter Parker, Flash Thompson, Liz Allen, Harry Osborn, and Gwen Stacey as they all try to figure out who they are becoming. Miyazawa manga-style art makes this teenage romp even cuter. Discover Mary Jane and Spider-Man in their early days.
Kevin Keller: Welcome to Riverdale by Dan Parent
Who doesn’t have fond memories of going to the orthodontist and reading Archie and the adventures of the rest of the gang in Riverdale? It can’t just be me. Well, today, the whole loveable gang’s still around getting up to their typical shenanigans that still make adults go “those darn kids!” Recently, current writer and artist Parent has introduced a new pal to the bunch, Kevin Keller. Kevin’s most famous for being Archie’s first gay character. Get to know Kevin and how he’s just another darn kid.
Doctor Who: The Only Good Dalek by Justin Richards and Mike Collins
Hiding from Daleks behind couches is a strong British childhood tradition I’d like to bring to the States. Exterminate! Here the Doctor and Amy Pond must stop the Daleks from invading Earth (again) and follow up on some rumors about there being a good Dalek. (The Doctor is not a believer.) My favorite scene is where a Dalek sinks into lava; now that’s something I’d like to see on the show. Do you believe in good Daleks?
GoGirl Vol. 1 by Trina Robbins and Anne Timmons
When Lindsay inherits her mother Janet’s superpowers, her teenage life involves more than just algebra. Inspired by Robbins own relationship with her daughter, GoGirl fosters a great mother-daughter relationship, not to mention equally awesome female friendships. In the first story, Lindsay saves her best friend Haseena, who’s been kidnapped, with the help of Janet and Haseena herself. Thoughout the book, Lindsay learns a lot about life, growing up, and her mother’s love as she starts fighting crime. And, of course, her adventures are just really a lot of fun. Take an adventure with GoGirl!
The Saga of Rex by Michel Gagne
Rex, a fox, gets taken from Earth to a faraway world to be studied. Due to his charismatic nature, he ends up traveling the universe and meeting his soul mate. In a comic with few words, Gagne paints every cosmic scene and discovers other worlds, species, and a bit of magic through the point-of-view of a fox. This adorable fox will melt your heart no matter what planet you’re from.
What comic books do you recommend for those under 12?
*Graphic novels are collected versions of comic books. Though sometimes these book might go straight to graphic novel format and skip the single issue.
Erica McGillivray is the Director of Marketing for GeekGirlCon.
It’s Black Friday, and you know what that means! We are gearing up for the holidays, and GeekGirlCon brings you a series on geeky gifts this year. We start off with some geek gifts on a budget. Whether you are creating your own wishlist, or buying for a partner, child, companion, or fellow-saver-of-the-universe, we’ve got some goodies for you! Some gift shoppers are looking for deals, so we present to you: Geek Gifts on a Budget.
Every geek needs a wash (who doesn’t?). They’ll enjoy their baths and showers more if they have super geeky soap, such as these SNES parody soaps.
SNES Parody Soap
After getting nice and clean, the geek in your life may like to dress up a bit. Geek jewelry is prolific on the internet. Is your geek giftee a fan of Sailor Moon? Check out these Sailor Moon ribbon necklaces (inner senshi only at this time – great for all ages – although it has small parts, and if you have skin sensitivity issues, some extra precaution)!
If gaming or science is more the style, here are a few more pieces of jewelry:
Orange and Blue Portal Friendship Bracelets
Handblown Glass DNA Strand Capsule Pendant
Now dressed up and all set to go, the geek in your life may wish to decorate their accessories with these Smartphone Earphone Jack Plug – they add decoration to your phone and keep the jack free from dust. For example, this Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Earphone Jack Accessory:
If your geeky cook is a Star Wars aficionado, be sure to accompany the Star Wars cookbooks with Star Wars spatulas, cookie cutters, or pancake shapers from Williams-Sonoma. Or maybe your geeky cook is more into the Marvel Universe, and loves the Hulk, Cap, Spidey, and Iron Man. Williams-Sonoma has you covered on that, too.
Star Wars Cookie Cutters
Star Wars Pancake Shapers
There are any number of books and movies available this holiday season, which are always a great budget item. While reading a book or watching a movie, the geek in your life might like something to cuddle with. What better than a plushie? Super Mario Fans may enjoy an Invincibility Star or a Red Power Up Mushroom.
If you’ve got a geek in your life (or are a geek yourself), you know how hard it can be to find the “perfect” gift. Most geeks are first in line or online to snag the latest [insert cool geek object of affection here] before the rest of the population even knows it exists!
Whatever the geeky inclination, get thee to etsyRAIN’s 4th Annual Handmade Holiday Show Black Friday Weekend (November 23 and 24, 2012) to check out 70 craft makers and artisans featuring their handmade wares. The show will be held on two floors of the Marion McCaw Hall at the Seattle Center featuring gifts in the following categories:
Bags and Purses
Bath and Body items
Ceramics and Pottery
Clothing and Accessories
Glass (Not jewelry)
Jewelry (Beadwork, Metalwork, other materials)
And Much More!
EtsyRAIN is Etsy’s official Seattle Metropolitan “Street Team” made up of regional artists and craft makers who own independent shops on Etsy.com. Members reside in the Seattle metropolitan area, as far north as Port Townsend and as far south as Olympia. Their mission is to nurture a supportive local community of artists and craft makers that will inspire, educate and promote the growth of their individual shops on Etsy.
Laurel McJannet is GeekGirlCon’s Web Content Producer. Laurel writes, designs and consults as a marketing communications professional. There isn’t a CMS she doesn’t like, she’s mastered the art of translating tech-speak for the non-techie, and she is proof positive that Marketing and IT can co-exist and not implode.