The increased popularity of the graphic novel and its penetration into new channels is not likely to be a short-lived phenomenon, according to an article in the ICv2 Retailers Guide to Graphic Novels #5, released on the eve of the Book Expo America trade show being held in New York this weekend.
The article compares the current trend to a similar upsurge in graphic novel acceptance in the early 90s, and finds a lot of differences. Because of the wider acceptance of graphic novels; the movie, videogame, and TV tie-ins; the level of talent that's being attracted to the medium; and the changes in the audience, ICv2 believes that the current trend has much stronger underpinnings and a greater likelihood of turning into a long-term phenomenon. Perhaps the most important difference is the increased breadth of the graphic novel audience, which has now grown to include a large percentage of females and more younger readers. That's primarily attributable to manga, but the entire market is benefiting from the influx of new readers, and is likely to continue to do so for decades to come.