A very in-demand book at BEA-- and not just as a hot graphic novel--was David Small's graphic memoir Stitches. I grabbed an ARC copy, but did not meet the author.
Do you like Fun Home? or Blankets? or Tonoharu? This is one of the best graphic memoirs I've ever read. His black and white watercolors portray a family in 1950's Detroit -- radiologist father uses Xrays to cure sinus problems on David-- brother escapes to his drum set-- and his unhappy and judgement mother rules the roost.
Yet it's another art as redemption novel too. David always draws his own world and eventually grows into praise for his work.
The back cover says the release date is September 2009, and I am quite sure it will be on all the Top GN of 2009 list. Look for it!