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The Importance of Graphic Novels

The Importance of Graphic Novels

The case for graphic novels

Graphic novels can enhance children’s literacy skills, whether they are struggling or advanced readers.

Adults sometimes want their children to move on to “real” chapter books and push them to leave graphic novels behind. However, graphic novels are excellent for expanding vocabulary and building more abstract skills such as using context clues and making inferences. They are real books!

For example, readers must look closely at the words and images in graphic novels in order to understand the story, which requires them to pay attention to nuances in both.

The illustrations also allow authors to use more advanced vocabulary, since readers have the pictures to help them understand the meaning of the words. In addition, readers can follow more complex storylines with the images to aid their comprehension and memory.

Something for everyone

The subject matter has also broadened from the classic superhero comic book themes that likely come to mind for many people. 

Graphic novel characters range from regular kids facing typical challenges, to historical figures telling the stories of their lives, to fantastical creatures living in far away worlds. Some are silly; some are serious. They cover everything from friendship and identity to immigration and the Holocaust to solving mysteries and fighting crime. 

There are Pokemon graphic novels, My Little Pony graphic novels, Minecraft graphic novels, The Babysitters’ Club graphic novels, I Survived graphic novels, Disney graphic novels … you get the idea. Whatever your child’s interests are, we probably have a graphic novel featuring it.

Plus, graphic novels are just plain fun to read, and books that are fun to read help children fall in love with reading!

Learn more about the benefits of graphic novels

Check out these suggestions!

Graphic novels you might already know and love!

The Bad Guys by Aaron Blabey

Dog Man by Dav Pilkey

Star Wars

My Little Pony

The Baby-sitters Club

Graphic novels you might not have discovered yet. Find a new favorite!

Simon and Chester by Cale Atkinson

Zita the Space Girl by Ben Hatke

Narwhal and Jelly by Ben Clanton

Amulet by Kazu Kibuishi

Noodleheads by Tedd Arnold

Akissi: Tales of Mischief

Phoebe and Her Unicorn by Dana Simpson

Splatoon by Sankichi Hinodeya

Learn about history, science, and current events through graphic novels

Illegal by Eoin Colfer

Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales

Hidden by Loic Dauvillier

Antibiotics: A Graphic History by Brandon Terrell


Written by Carolyn L, Youth Services Library Assistant

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