Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Janet's Top 10 Children's Graphic Novel Picks for 2010

2010 is almost to a close and the publishing world has released a number of great graphic novels for children this past year. It is always a pleasure to help you and your children choose the right graphic novel to take home. And if your child isn't a big reader, graphic novels make for great reading entertainment for reluctant readers. Here's a list of my top 10 favorites (in alphabetical order) and I hope that your young readers will enjoy them too!

1. Amelia Earhart: This Broad Ocean by Sarah Stewart & Ben Towle--I really enjoy historical fiction and this book is no different. Follow Grace, an aspiring young journalist who is excited when Amelia Earhart arrives in her town of Trepasey, Newfoundland in June 1948. The illustrations match the time period quite well and the book is nicely researched. For grades 4-6.

2. Johnny Boo and the Mean Little Boy by James Kochalka--This is the latest installment in the Johnny Boo series. Johnny Boo 's little buddy Squiggle wants to play, but Johnny's in no mood, so he makes friends with a butterfly-hunting little boy. For grades 1-4.

3. Lunch Lady and the Summer Camp Shakedown by Jarrett Krosoczka--In this fourth installment of the Lunch Lady Series, the school lunch lady spends the summer as the camp cook at Camp Shakedown where she investigates the mystery of the legendary swamp monster. And of course, the Lunch Lady does all her crime fighting using her kitchen gadgets. For grades 2-5.

4. Meanwhile by Jason Shiga --This is the first ever "choose your own adventure" type of graphic novel I've ever seen. After making a choice between chocolate or vanilla ice cream, follow the tubes that lead to different panels throughout the book. According to cover, you can have over 3,ooo different story possibilities. For grades 3-6.

5. Michael Townsend's Amazing Greek Myths of Wonder and Blunders By Michael Townsend--This is one of the funniest books I've read all year. I really enjoy Townsend's fun illustrations and the characters are so cute. Full of humor, this book will entertain readers with bickering sheep, unruly rulers, and lots of jokes. This book also makes for a great introduction to Greek myths for young readers! For grades 3-6.

6. Olympians Series: Book One: Zeus: King of the Gods & Book 2: Athena: Grey-Eyed Goddess both by George O'Connor--For more advanced readers, writer and illustrator O'Connor does a phenomenal job portraying the power of both of these Greek gods. Their strength and emotions jump off the pages and contain more depth for advanced readers. For grades 4 and up.

7. Peter H. Reynolds and FableVision Present Zebrafish by Sharon Emerson--Vita forms a band with her new peers to raise awareness and generate donations to help a classmate with a terminal illness. Through their example, children will gain a sense that they too can make a difference, no matter how big or small. Plus, I love the blue hues used in this book and Vita's purple hair! For grades 4-6.

8. Smile by Raina Telgemeier--From 6th through 10th grade, Raina copes with a variety of dental problems all because she tripped and fell, knocking her front teeth out. Telgemier is also the illustrator for the Babysitter's Club graphic novel series. For grades 4 and up.

9. True Things: (Adults Don't Want Kids to Know) by Jimmy Gownley--The latest installment of the Amelia Rules! series, where Amelia celebrates her 11th birthday. But before the birthday party, she must endure some hardships among the people she loves. For grades 4-6.

10. Zig and Wikki in Something Ate My Homework by Nadja Spiegelman--This is the latest publication in the Toon Books line, graphic novels perfect for beginning readers. New characters, Zig and Wikki, travel to earth to find a pet for a class assignment. For grades K-3.

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