11 Best Nonfiction Science Comics for Adults

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Sometimes you want to learn something, but you also love comics and want to absorb them through your eyes every waking minute. What should super fans do? Of course, read some non-fiction science comics! No science lover should miss these gems, and no true believer will.

Unfortunately, this category is severely lacking in racial diversity. This reflects a wider lack of diversity in science, which is itself worrying. Luckily, smart people (scientists!) have formed some amazing minority associations, many of which provide scholarships to minority students, and gather resources. If you’re looking for a comic book author of color, you’re in luck! Book Riot has a must-read list of black comic book authors as well as some general rep recommendations.

Bird watching is my favorite video game: a cartoon about the natural world from Rosemary Mosco’s Bird and the Moon

Everything about this book is fascinating and wonderful. seriously. Even if you think you hate birds now, it will get you into bird watching. It’ll also give you some fascinating tidbits about nature, including some great species dating profiles with lots of science-y biology jokes.

On the Origin of Species: A Graphic Adaptation by Michael Keller, Nicole Lager Fuller by Charles Darwin

That’s exactly what it sounds like: a version of On the Origin of Species, presented as a sort of loose, goofy graphic novel. Look at it, if someone throws a copy at you, don’t duck, just rattle.

Climate Change: A Personal Science Journey by Philippe Squarzoni

Join the author on a climate awareness journey. Or, if you’ve already embarked on a climate awareness journey yourself, read this book and enjoy the fact that others are as overwhelmed by it as you are. Keep going until the last exciting call to action!

Logicomix by Apostolos DoxiatisLogicomix: An Epic Quest for Truth by Apostolos K. Doxiadis, Christos H. Papadimitriou, Alecos Papadatos and Annie Di Donna

OK: no 100% About science. But it’s about math! There can be no science and therefore no philosophy without mathematics and logic, so this book is about Bertrand Russell wrestling with all of that. Read and love it.

The Stuff of Life: An Illustrated Guide to Genetics and DNA by Mark Schultz, Zander Cannon, and Kevin Cannon

Squinch is a super-intelligent, asexually reproducing alien, so when they realize their genetic diversity is dangerously low, they know they have a problem. At that time they were looking for a solution on Earth. Get an outsider’s perspective on our trendy DNA-based sexual reproduction in this fascinating book!

How to Fake the Moon Landing: Debunking the Science Denial Myth by Darryl Cunningham

Yes, we really did it Land on the moon.No, the MMR vaccine can no lead to autism. Cunningham busts myths with the power of fact in this funny and informative science comic.

Neural Comics: Comics About the Brain by Hana Ros and Matteo Farinella

Wondering what a neuron is? This graphic novel about science takes you into the brain in a serious visual way. Think of it as an introduction to the chapter on the brain you slept on in college biology.

Lovelace and Babbage's Thrilling Adventure from Padua SydneyThe Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage: The (Mostly) True Story of the First Computer Sydney Padua

The story of the first computer is wild and furry, and it’s (mostly) true! Charles Babbage had an adding machine. Ada Lovelace is a math genius. Together they invented computer programming and developed a device that could solve all the problems in the world…just to create many new ones.

Thunder and Lightning: Past, Present, and Future Weather by Lauren Redniss

If you think non-fiction science comics are boring, this might be a good book for you because it’s about rain. (get it? ?) covering history, science, celebrities and disasters, this book is hand-designed using copper plate etching.

Trinity: A Graphical History of the First Atomic Bomb by Jonathan Fetter-Vorm

It might be a crazy science project, but the people who built the atomic bomb were far from crazy. They started with excitement and patriotism and ended the project successfully, but full of guilt and doubt.

Nick Sousanis

Nonfiction science comics can be a little young at times. Of course, this list is for adults, but more than a few of these titles may appeal to teens as well. Not this book! It’s a major interdisciplinary arts project that’s basically about communication science.

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