A graphic novel is a longer comic book, in a more permanent paperback form, with all of the action and adventure of comic books many adults grew up reading. These graphic novels, for children ages 6 and up, promise to give action and adventure to thrill-seeking young readers.
“Ricky Ricotta’s Mighty Robot” by Dav Pilkey, Illustrated by Dan Santat, 2000/2014, Scholastic, 112 pages, ages 6-8.
Dav Pilkey, the author of the Captain Underpants” series, shares the story of Ricky Ricotta, the mouse and how he takes down Dr. Stinky McNasty’s evil creation, a Mighty Robot. When Ricky and the robot join forces, good triumphs over evil. This book is a reprint of the original Ricky Ricotta series, with all new full-color illustrations. Watch for the whole series to be re-released by March, 2015.
“Kung Pow Chicken: Bok! Bok! Boom!” by Cyndi Marko, 2014, Scholastic, 80 pages, ages 7-9.
Most of the world doesn’t know that, although a chicken, Gordon Bleu has superpowers. When an evil character approaches, Gordon’s tail feathers begin to tingle and twitch, which is a sign that it’s time for him to squeeze into his super suit and become Kung Pow Chicken. “Bok! Bok! Boom!” pits Gordon against the evil Dr. Screech, in order to save Honey Comb, the famous opera singing chicken. Gordon saves the day, with some help from the flying chicken wing and the Drumsticks of Doom. More adventures of the Kung Pow Chicken can be found in others books from this silly adventure series.
“Cleopatra in Space: Target Practice” by Mike Maihack, 2014, Graphix, 176 pages, ages 8-11.
A young Cleopatra heads back to the future in this Egyptian action adventure. Joined by her friends Akila, Brian, and cat Khensu, Cleo has unknowningly been chosen to save the galaxy from the evil Xaius Octavian. Intricate color illustrations demonstrate Mike Maihack’s artistic skills crafted through his degree from the Columbus College of Art & Design. “Target Practice” is the first book in the series, and fans will enjoy Cleo’s daring, yet down-to-earth personality.
“The Dumbest Idea Ever!” by Jimmy Gownley, 2014, Graphix, 240 pages, ages 10 and up.
Jimmy Gownley, author of the “Amelia Rules” graphic novel series, shares the story of his beginnings as a comics creator. When school wasn’t going right for him, 13 –year-old Jimmy turned to what he loved – comics. What started out as a way to express his ideas through words and pictures, became a way to make friends and money by selling his comics at school. His success led to a career as a graphic novelist. Through his comic-style, Gownley shares both how to draw and why to draws comics. This message may inspire children who enjoy expressing their ideas through words and pictures.
“The Silversix” by AJ Lieverman, Illustrations by Darren Rawlings, 2013, Graphix, 192 pages, ages 10 and up.
In a futuristic, sci-fi land, six children in an orphanage discover they each have a copy of the same secret document that could be the key to their past and future. Phoebe, the plucky self-proclaimed leader, spirits the kids on an escape and then a discovery of what just might be their new home. When details of an evil plot surface, Phoebe and the others test their friendship, their skills, and their resolve.
Reviewed by Elizabeth Dobler