Tips for searching our online catalogue!

Our online catalogue can be found here and by clicking the “Catalogue” tab on our website home page.

Search bar

When searching multiple keywords, separate them with a comma. The more keywords you add, the more you will narrow your search results.

If you would like an exact match for your search query, enclose your phrase in quotation marks. For example, “beautiful darkness” will bring up an exact title match for 1 record, but without quotation marks the same phrase will bring up 4 record matches based on keywords.

Here are examples of keywords you can search to find priority areas in our collection:

BIPOC: for black, Indigenous, people of colour creators. Related keywords: PoC, people of colour.
black creator
: for Indigenous creators. You can also include more specific keywords for representation like: Plains Cree, Metis, Haida, Tahltan First Nation, Inuit, Anishinaabe (for location, language, tribe, etc.).
* You can search many representational keywords for an author’s background like: African, Arab, Asian, Iranian, Jewish, Muslim, etc.
own voices: Where the protagonist and the author share a marginalized identity.
LGBTQ+: comics with content that narrates lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, queer experiences +. You can also include more specific related keywords like: queer, gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, non-binary, gender queer, asexual, etc.
women: to find comics by women identifying creators as well as protagonists.
mental health: Comics that have content related to mental health, mental illness, including grieving, trauma, etc. You can also include related keywords like: depression, anxiety, bipolar, mania, etc. to narrow your search results.
physical health:
Comics that have significant content on the subject/experiences of physical health and disability. You can also include related keywords like physical illness, disability, chronic pain, cancer, etc. to narrow your search results.

Examples of other popular keywords: action, adventure, commentary, death, emotional, environmentalism, experimental, fairy tale, fantasy, feminism, French language, ghost, grief, hero, high school, history, humour, literary adaptation, loneliness, magical realism, mature content, memories, motherhood, murder, music, mystery, mythology, newspaper, non-English, parent, philosophy, photograph, poetry, political, politics, pop culture, pregnancy, protest, psychological, racism, relationships, revolution, romance, science fiction, series, sexuality, short stories, siblings, slice of life, social commentary, space travel, spooky, superhero, superpowers, surreal, survival, technology, teenagers, thriller, time travel, webcomic, whimsical, wordless, zine + many more!

Drop down menu in search bar

Use the drop down menu in our general search bar if you are looking specifically for:
A title you know the name of
An author: type in their first and last name without any commas. You could also just type in their first name or last name if one of them is not known.
A publisher you know the name of

*Select the appropriate category before clicking “Search”. You may need to use Google to find the correct spelling first, as OpenBiblio (our library software) is very sensitive to incorrect spelling and may not recognize misspelled words.

Browse by Subject

Click on a subject area to browse that subject section. The numbers in brackets represent the amount of titles within each category.

Once you have clicked on the subject area, you will see a list of titles with cover images. This list will automatically be sorted alphabetically by the title of the comic, zine, or graphic novel. If you would like to sort the list alphabetically by the author’s last name instead, click “sort by author” at the very top of the page.

When the list is sorted by the author’s last name, this is the exact order the comics are organized on the shelves in our physical library space.

Browse by Publisher

Scroll a bit further down the page and you will see the “Browse Bibliography by Publisher” drop down menu, an alternative way to search for publishers besides using the main search bar. This is helpful if you are unsure of spelling or are looking to discover new publishers.

Curated keywords drop down menu

You can also browse the drop down menu titled “Browse Bibliography by Keyword” for reading and research inspiration if you are not quite sure what you are looking for or to get to know the scope of our collection.
Click on each numerical or letter range to expand the category. We are currently working on taming these keywords.

That’s it for now, but I will add to this over time and as we update our online catalogue

Our OPAC (online public access catalog ) is still very much a work in progress, but we are very proud of the features we have added 🙂 If you have suggestions for improving the online catalogue or notice errors, please get in touch with me:


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