Ezra Claytan Daniels’ Upgrade Soul, one of the most talked about graphic novels of 2018, was named as one of nominees in the “Graphic Reprints” category of the Eisner Awards earlier this year. Since then, the book was nominated in Harvey Awards “Book of the Year” category, alongside Daniels’ other work, BTM FDRS (Fantagraphics).
This week, it was also announced that Upgrade Soul was nominated for “Best Graphic Novel” in the Ringo Awards, with Ezra Claytan Daniels nominated for “Best Artist or Penciler.”
The book rounded out the industry’s top honors with yesterday’s announcement of an Ignatz nomination for “Outstanding Graphic Novel.”
Upgrade Soul had previously won the 2017 Dwayne McDuffie Award for Diversity in Comics with an unproofed PDF. The book was immediately picked up by Lion Forge, and announced for publication in September 2018 to universal acclaim, including starred reviews and multiple recommendations and year-end list mentions from influential critics and publications alike.
Writer/illustrator Ezra Claytan Daniels says “I can’t even express how much of an honor it is to have my first published book so enthusiastically embraced by the comics industry. It only galvanizes for me the importance of sticking by your vision and not taking any platform you’re lucky enough to have for granted.”
Upgrade Soul is the story of an elderly couple who become the guineapigs of a visionary procedure that aims to revivify them by filteringtoxins from their bodies on a molecular level. When the procedure experiences a fatal complication, the couple is faced with severelydeformed, though intellectually superior, duplicates of themselves. Soon, it becomes clear that only one version of each individual cansurvive, and the psychological battle for dominance begins.
Upgrade Soul was originally released digital graphic novel (relaunching for iOS in October) featuring an original score by celebrated experimental musician/composer Alexis Gideon, to be released by Chicago’s “For Practically Everyone” Records in a deluxe vinyl edition later this year.