Comics/Graphic Novels

8 Fantasy Graphic Novels For Adults To Lose Themselves In

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Yashvi Peeti


Yashvi Peeti is an aspiring writer and an aspiring penguin. She has worked as an editorial intern with Penguin Random House India and HarperCollins Publishers India. She is always up for fangirling over poetry, taking a walk in a park, and painting tiny canvases. You can find her on Instagram @intangible.perception

Fantasy graphic novels for adults have always had a dedicated fandom, but they’re becoming more appealing to a wider audience as well, including those outside of the popular superhero genre. There’s nothing quite like fantasy graphic novels for adults to help you completely step out of your reality and enter one of endless possibilities. Graphic novels can explore elements of fantasy in a way that most movies would never allow. Writers and artists can explore ideas, themes, characters, and mediums without the constant pressure of catering to popularity — or a special effects budget. There is a lot more room to experiment. The results are weird, quirky, nuanced, raw, and everything else you want your fantastical universe to be.

I’m bummed that Goodreads Choice Awards did not include the Graphic Novels category in 2023. To make up for that, this list contains some nominees of the previous years as well as books that could have potentially been on the 2023 list. The fantasy worlds held within their pages are built with warriors, monsters, old gods, and more. I hope you find yourself immersed and living alongside your characters or find them living inside you.

The Many Deaths of Laila Starr Comic Cover

The Many Deaths of Laila Starr by Ram V. & Filipe Andrade

Humanity is built around its mortality. So what happens when they’re on the brink of discovering immortality? The avatar of death comes down to Earth. But there’s a catch. They have to live in the mortal body of the twentysomething girl from Mumbai, Laila Starr. We watch as Laila attempts to keep humans away from surpassing death. This is done through the lens of Hindu mythology with absolutely gorgeous illustrations.

monstress cover

Monstress, Volume 1: Awakening by Marjorie Liu & Sana Takeda 

This is an ongoing steampunk fantasy series with eight published volumes. It’s set in Asia in the 1900s and follows a 17-year-old Maika Halfwolf. She is struggling to survive a war and shares a psychic link with a creature with tremendous power. She’s the target for both humans and their enemies. She’s both the hunter and the hunted. The art is dark, detailed, and brings out the strange world and the mysteries it holds. It is a little information-heavy and could get overwhelming, but if you can ride that wave, you’re in for an adventure.

cover of Monica by Daniel Clowes

Monica by Daniel Clowes

This latest graphic novel by Daniel Clowes was released in October 2023. We get to hear Monica’s story through interconnected perspectives of people she meets — creeps, cultists, soldiers, therapists, and charlatans. Her story is also told in multiple genres like war, romance, horror, crime, the supernatural, and more. If you’re looking for something sad and dark to be blown away by, pick this up.

book cover of fangs by sarah anderson

Fangs by Sarah Andersen

It’s a vampire and werewolf love story! Elsie’s vampire blood has run cold for 300 years, but she’s never met someone to share an immortal lifetime of potential warmth with. This changes when she meets Jimmy, who has charm, a good sense of humour, and is very by the book with running wild every full moon. They like each other’s weird habits and insatiable appetites. Watch them fall and stay in love with someone so great who’s also so different from them.

Daytripper cover

Daytripper by Fábio Moon, Gabriel Bá, Dave Stewart & Sean Konot 

In this contemplative fantasy graphic novel for adults, we follow Brás de Oliva Domingos. He’s the son of a world-famous Brazilian writer and dreams of being one himself. However, he spends his days writing people’s obituaries and waiting around for his life to begin. We get to know about him through the people in his life: his parents, child, best friend, first love, and more. Each chapter of his life ends in a way he never sees coming. This is a lyrical exploration of what it is like to be alive and how death, both literal and metaphorical, is just around the corner.

from under mountains book cover

From Under Mountains by Claire Gibson, Marian Churchland & Sloane Leong 

If you’re looking for a slow-burn graphic novel and want to spend more time with the story, check this out. There are forces that threaten Akhara, like the mysterious magical goblins that live underneath the mountains. Karsgate Keep is all that stands in between. The daughter of the Lord of Karsgate Keep, Lady Elena, needs to rise to the occasion. She needs to defy convention and take on her father’s role. Will she be able to protect Akhara from harm perpetuating from both outside and within? Read on to find out.

Vei Vol 1 cover

Vei, Vol.1 by Sara B. Elfgren & Karl Johnsson 

This graphic novel has been translated from Swedish and is a perfect pick for fans of Norse mythology. It’s filled with bright, beautiful art and follows a warrior, Vei, who carries the fate of her people on her shoulders. The story begins with her exile and her eventual rescue by the Vikings. She ends up in the midst of Meistarileikir, a bloody game between the humans, the giants, and the gods of Asgard. This will decide who gets to rule the land of Midgard. Vei must fight for this land and her very life in it.

the cover of Locke & Key Volume 1

Locke & Key, Vol. 1: Welcome to Lovecraft by Joe Hill & Gabriel Rodriguez

If you’re looking for psychological horror to give you chills, this is it. Mr. Locke is brutally murdered, leaving behind his shattered wife and three children: Ty, Kinsey, and Bode. They end up having to move to their father’s ancestral house in Lovecraft. Their pain isn’t over just yet. The house isn’t how it seems, but no one seems to notice. Well, no one except the youngest kid, Bode. The story unfolds in sinister layers and is so popular now that it’s been adapted into a Netflix series.

For more fantasy graphic novels for adults and teens, check out 20 Incredible Genre-Bending Graphic Novels and 10 Great YA Fantasy Graphic Novels.