cover image Thirsty Mermaids

Thirsty Mermaids

Kat Leyh. Gallery, $29.99 (208p) ISBN 978-1-982133-57-3

Leyh (Snapdragon) unleashes another smart, heartfelt, and hilarious fantasy adventure in her first adult-oriented original graphic novel. After drunkenly transforming themselves into humans to party on dry land, three merfolk wake up to discover they’re trapped when they can’t undo the magic, and are forced to adapt while looking for a way to break the spell. While brash, scrappy Tooth and gregarious Pearl find odd jobs to pay the rent, their podmate Eez—a sea witch—toils in vain searching for both a solution to their dilemma and relief from the intense dysmorphia of being in a two-legged body. Leyh aptly uses this setup to explore themes of social alienation and queer “found family” as the trio bond with their new roommate Vivi, a trans woman of color, who teaches them about movies, breakfast food, and the horrors of capitalism. Each page vibrates with glowing colors, lending energy to Leyh’s already raucous (and bodily diverse) character designs; even the lettering feels full of life. This modern myth-bending escapade from a rising comics star serves up humor and light. Agent: Charlie Olsen, InkWell Management. (Feb.)