By Jase Peeples
Originally published on Advocate.com April 02 2013 1:32 PM ET
Kevin Keller became an instant icon as the first gay character introduced in the pages of Archie Comics in 2011. Since then, the teen quickly became one of the most recognizable faces in Riverdale, starring in several projects including his own miniseries, one-shots, and an ongoing comic as well.
Today, Kevin’s star continues to rise higher, and on April 18 he’ll be making history once again with a new hardcover young adult novel, simply titled Kevin, from Penguin Books.
The novel is written by comic and children’s book scribe Paul Kupperberg (Superman, Action Comics, Superboy, Supergirl) who also penned the popular Life With Archie issue, which depicted an adult Keller marrying his partner. The story will focus on Keller’s early years before he moved to Riverdale as he deals with bullying, sexuality, and several other issues.
“Kevin was created to be a character who is gay, to illustrate the inclusiveness of the Riverdale-Archie belief system, [not just to be] controversial,” Kupperberg told Publishers Weekly. “He’s there to reflect the reality of the world.”
“Kevin is a character who is gay, not a gay character,” Kupperberg added. “When you boil it down, it’s still an Archie comic, I didn’t even show them kissing. I’m not looking for controversy. I’m just telling a story.”