Honors & Awards

  • Junior Library Guild Selection

  • YALSA 2018 Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers Nominee

  • Texas Library Association Mavericks Graphic Novels Reading List

  • Cybils Award 2018 Graphic Novels Nominee

What Critics are saying...

[Rickety Stitch: The Middle-Route Run] is a fun blend of derring-do and humor...This, together with another cliff-hanger ending, will have readers clamoring for the next installment. VERDICT A must for fans of the previous entry.
— School Library Journal
The Middle-Route Run mixes plenty of mythical tropes, as well as jokes about big business and municipalities, and crafts them into a spectacular whole. There are no bones about how funny, exciting, and original Rickety Stitch is!
— Fansided
Parks and Costa impressively evolve their tale into a compelling epic quest with deeper themes than the initial chapters hint. This trilogy opener is ideal for Nimona fans looking to see tried-and-true fantasy tropes get hilariously upended.
— Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Conjuring up an entertaining bard’s tale, this adventure is sure to appeal to anyone who loves high fantasy punctuated with comedy, especially older fans of Jeff Smith’s “Bone.”
— School Library Journal (starred review)
Costa and Parks’ script is imaginative and laugh-out-loud funny, unafraid to crack a well-timed, verging-on-naughty joke. Costa’s art is unfalteringly, vibrantly buoyant, with many sight gags that effortlessly turn the profane into something adorably laughable. A cliffhanger ending leaves readers poised for the sequel—they will be clamoring.
— Kirkus (starred review)
The illustrations are dark and foreboding, highlighting the extensive array of dangers that the two find themselves in, while retaining plenty of the sardonic, mature humor of the text. There is lots of intertextual cleverness going on that results in this book being both an homage to and spoof of the traditional fantasy hero’s quest, both in the illustrations and in the narration.
— The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books (starred review)
The world that’s been created is a gorgeously realized homage to fantasy-quest conventions, complete with knights in armor, unicorns, suspicious villagers, and ghostly evil presences, and the artwork reflects that in its bold colors and lively character designs. The jokes, on the other hand, are modern, funny, and sometimes bawdy. The first of a planned trilogy will have readers eagerly awaiting the next installment of Rickety’s adventure.
— Booklist
The goofy jokes leavened with existential musings recall Terry Pratchett and Patricia Wrede, and well-read fans of fantasy will appreciate the loving homage to the genre.
— Shelf Awareness
You know when you finish a book and your first thought is that more people need to know about this story? That’s how I felt finishing Rickety Stitch.
— Bookish
Ben Costa and James Parks create one of the weirdest buddy narratives you’re likely to encounter. Their mixture of humor, adventure, and dark overtones make this [comic] stand out in ways that others haven’t. This is a fun, fun read!
— Comics Alternative
This pair of adventurers doesn’t exactly fit in with the ogres and brigands who overrun the world. The premise is made all the better by the wonderful visual humor of Costa.
— io9

What Authors are saying...

Rickety Stitch is full of wonderful characters and pacing…and what surprises! Storytelling stripped down to the bare bones.
— Stan Sakai, Eisner Award Winning Creator of Usagi Yojimbo
Dazzling, inventive and fun. Ben Costa and James Parks manage to both spoof and pay homage to the fantasy tradition, while creating characters we care about. A tour de force.
— Jason Shiga, Eisner Award Winning Creator of Demon
I laughed so loud I scared my dog while reading this. The art is superb, the characters are so engaging you’ll wish they could come to your summer backyard BBQs. (Who wouldn’t want to chill with a soulful, guitar-playing skeleton?) Rickety Stitch is dead — but really good at rocking a six-string — and the only clue to his former identity is a song he hears in a dream. He goes on a quest to find out who he was and along the way meets an incredible bunch of characters.
— Veronica Fish, Vulture