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Expensive Paper

I’m really happy to see graphic novels beginning to win significant literary rewards, and to be included for them. But I have to admit, I feel like I’m much less likely to purchase graphic novels than I am novels or works of long non-fiction. The emotional payoff can be similar, but it takes so much less time to get there that it doesn’t always feel worth the cost. And while individual works like 1602 or Watchmen have fragments of fantastic, incandescent prose, I miss the longer, more sustained passages of novels when I read graphic works, including comics collections. I really want to read Marvel’s Secret Invasion arc, for example, but I’ve been having a hard time justifying the purchase. Of course, this doesn’t necessarily hold for everyone — and I hope it doesn’t. I want graphic novels to stay commercially viable so they’ll keep being written, and so libraries will start to stock even more of them. But it’s a preference I’ve only just noticed, even as it’s developed over time. And I’m wondering, as paperbacks have become more expensive, if anyone else feels the same way?

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