Graphic Novels: More than Capes and Cowls

Browsing my local bookstore last weekend, I stumbled across three volumes in Neil Gaiman’s groundbreaking Sandman series. “Do you have other graphic novels?” I asked the nearest clerk. “Graphic novels?” She looked perplexed. “Yeah,” I said, holding up a Gaiman cover. “Like these?” “Oh.” More confusion. “I thought those were comic books.” My point exactly. Tell an adult story via text and sequential art, and chances are most people will see it as a comic book on steroids. But a …