Many parents and some educators are wary of graphic novels, but they can be fantastic tools for struggling readers of all ages. The print is minimal and is supported by images to help the reader self-monitor his/her reading and therefore practice recognizing the right words. The images also help the reader to follow the plot, providing critical practice comprehending themes and events which can be quite complex.
If you’re new to graphic novels, investigate some of the fantastic offerings below:
For Middle School Readers
For Developing High School Readers
- American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang
- the Malice series by Chris Wooding
- the Good Neighbors series by Holly Black and Ted Naifeh
For Mature Readers
- Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons
- the Dark Knight series by Frank Miller
- Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka, adapted by Peter Kuper
- Maus by Art Spiegelman
In addition, The Great Illustrated Classics series has over 70 titles to choose from which students may find to be useful accompaniments to challenging, grade-level material at school. Although these books are not true graphic novels, they present condensed, simplified versions of books like The Picture of Dorian Gray and Moby Dick accompanied by illustrations to support comprehension. Struggling readers could try reading the Great Illustrated Classics series' version of a chapter before reading the original chapter in the school book.
For an article further explaining the benefits of reading graphic novels, as well as additional suggestions, visit the Scholastic website. Truly fascinated graphic novel fans or budding artists should check out Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics for a look at how sophisticated this art form can be.