Library Day Fridays

Experimenting with Graphic Novels

I had hoped to post my first book review today but, as of writing this post, I haven’t finished either of the books I was planning to review. I should be able to finish one of them by Friday, but since I have a few other things going on this week, and I don’t want to put together a rushed review, I decided to postpone. In place of a review, I thought I’d talk about a type of book I only recently started seeking out – Graphic Novels.

I’ve read graphic novels in the past, but they’ve never been high on my reading list and I would only rarely go searching for one. About a month or so ago, however, I started watching Amy Dalen’s segments on Geek & Sundry (you can watch one of Amy Dalen’s Video’s here). She talks about comic books primarily, and her segments got me thinking about experimenting with graphic novels. So, one evening when I had time between my Grad school edits, I spent a few hours looking up different types of graphic novels, and reserving a number of them from the library website.

I then spent a weekend reading nothing but Graphic novels. I enjoyed some more than others, but the experiment showed me that graphic novels can be really enjoyable and fit into many different genres of literature. I generally thought of graphic novels as primarily telling stories of Superheroes and science fiction (don’t get me wrong, I’m not at all saying this is a bad thing since I enjoy both of those genres). I now found that they cover genres from classics, to fairytale remakes, to mystery.

And the artwork is fantastic. I have always loved illustrations. When I was little, my favourite illustrators were the ones who went out of their way to add in detail. A mouse that appeared on every single page; a border that portrayed a side story (Jann Brett was one of my favourites); secret clues that helped solve a mystery. I’ve continued to love and collect children’s books that feature beautiful illustrations. The illustrations are often one of my favourite parts of the various graphic novels I’ve read recently.

Without further ado, here’s a summary of some of the graphic novels I’ve read recently. I’ve read adaptations of childrens, or young adult novels such as The Lightening Thief (adapted by Robert Venditti), and Artemis Fowl: The Arctic Incident (adapted by Eoin Colfer & Andrew Donkin). I’ve also read adaptations of classics such as Northanger Abbey, Pride and Prejudice (both adapted by Nancy Butler), and Dracula (adapted by Gary Reed). Both of the Austen adaptations were fantastic but I found Dracula a bit disjointed. The adaptation was generally good, but if I wasn’t already familiar with the novel I think I would have found it a confusing and somewhat disjointed.

Now, I feel I should preface these next two novels with a disclaimer, so here goes. <Megra12 Disclaimer: I am, and always have been, a HUGE Nancy Drew fan. I am not ashamed of this.> Now that’s taken care of, in my first trip to the library I borrowed two Nancy Drew graphic novels. Nancy Drew Girl Detective: The Demon of River Heights (Stefan Petrucha) and Nancy Drew Girl Detective: The New Case Files: Vampire Slayer part 1 (Stefan Petrucha and Sarah Kinney). I enjoyed them so much I was disappointed I’d only had two brought to my local library. I have since requested more and I’ll most likely end up reading the whole series. In the past I’ve had mixed feelings about spin off Nancy Drew series (I was especially against the ones that saw Nancy break up with Ned Nickerson. Shame on you authors), but so far I love the graphic novel spin offs.

Do you read any graphic novels? What are your favourites?

Keep Smiling!

“A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.” – C.S. Lewis

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