Seeing is Reading: Wordless Books, Graphic Novels and Comics

They may look like “comics,” but graphic novels are far more. This month we explore them to discover their appeal. Graphic novels are an extension of the comic book and an adaptation of the Japanese form, Manga. They draw in a child’s attention -- even reluctant readers. The pictures actually help your children and teens learn more vocabulary from the visual clues. Once they read a graphic novel, they may want to read the original book, other books in the series, or similar books. Graphic novels also tie together interests in TV characters, superheroes, favorite movies, and video games through characterization, fast action, and humor. Graphic novels can also be non-fiction; learn about history, science, and famous people by “seeing” them in this more visual form. Children may even want to draw their own versions of classic books. Many traditional books are being offered today in graphic novel format. Children of all ages, reading abilities, and interests are drawn to graphic novels; often “I hate reading” becomes “Which book is next?”