Mini reviews: 2021 does graphic novels #2

Good morning everyone!

I am here with some more graphic novels that I’ve read recently. I find graphic novels a great thing to wrap up in mini reviews and they’re always super popular blog posts! This is part 2 of the ‘Steph reads loads of graphic novels during half term’ blog series (if you want to see the other ones I read, check out this blog post). Let’s get going!

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Space Boy – Stephen McCranie

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“To Amy, everyone has a flavor. Her mom is the flavor of mint–sharp and bright. Her dad is like hot chocolate–sweet and full of gentle warmth. Amy lives on a mining colony in out in deep space, but when her dad loses his job the entire family is forced to move back to Earth. Amy says goodbye to her best friend Jemmah and climbs into a cryotube where she will spend the next 30 years frozen in a state of suspended animation, hurtling in a rocket toward her new home. Her life will never be the same, but all she can think about is how when she gets to Earth, Jemmah will have grown up without her. When Amy arrives on Earth, she feels like an alien in a strange land. The sky is beautiful but gravity is heavy and the people are weird. Stranger still is the boy she meets at her new school–a boy who has no flavor.”

I thoroughly enjoyed this – it just eminated coolness. A brilliantly done graphic novel which tells the story of a girl who moves from space to Earth and has to adjust to life with more gravity, new friends and all of the intricacies of people. I thought this was just a whole heap of fun. This just oozes coolness from the AR glasses the children use in school to the chat about life in Space. I just adored the incredibly illustrative style and the ever mysterious silver haired boy! I will be investing in the rest of the series if I can get my hands on them because I want to know more about these characters and their world!

Goldie Vance – Hope Larson

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Sixteen-year-old Marigold “Goldie” Vance has an insatiable curiosity. She lives at a Florida resort with her dad, who manages the place, and it’s her dream to one day be the hotel’s in-house detective. When Walter, the current detective, encounters a case he can’t crack, together they utilize her smarts, skills, and connections to solve the mystery…even if it means getting into a drag race, solving puzzles, or chasing a helicopter to do it!

This, like Space Boy, oozes cool, charm and charisma. This is great fun and clever too. A story of detectives, stolen necklaces and a brilliant bunch of characters. This has a very 60s feel to it that made me smile from ear to ear! It gave me like cool Scooby Gang vibes. Loved the story and all the different twists and turns! I think I’ll definitely be purchasing the others now! The artwork in this is just spot on; there’s so much colour and life packed into this brilliant graphic novel. Loved the insight into cover designs at the end too!

Twins – Varian Johnson

Maureen and Francine Carter are twins and best friends. They participate in the same clubs, enjoy the same foods, and are partners on all their school projects. But just before the girls start sixth grade, Francine becomes Fran — a girl who wants to join the chorus, run for class president, and dress in fashionable outfits that set her apart from Maureen. A girl who seems happy to share only two classes with her sister! Maureen and Francine are growing apart and there’s nothing Maureen can do to stop it. Are sisters really forever? Or will middle school change things for good?

This was great fun! This tells the story of twin girls who go head to head to run for class president. Going head to head makes them drift apart and argue a lot! They’re so very different and I loved learning about both of them individually. This is full of sibling rivalry and feeling not good enough that I think lots of people will associate with! I really liked that the girls were both very different and that really stood out! This is gorgeously illustrated too! This is going down an absolute steal in my classroom and LOADS of them are desperate for more!

Amulet: The Stonekeeper – Kazu Kibuishi

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After the tragic death of their father, Emily and Navin move with their mother to the home of her deceased great-grandfather, but the strange house proves to be dangerous. Before long, a sinister creature lures the kids’ mom through a door in the basement. Em and Navin, desperate not to lose her, follow her into an underground world inhabited by demons, robots, and talking animals. Eventually, they enlist the help of a small mechanical rabbit named Miskit. Together with Miskit, they face the most terrifying monster of all, and Em finally has the chance to save someone she loves.

LOVED THIS! This is a book I see EVERYWHERE and now that I’ve read it, I think it deserves to be recommended EVERYWHERE. It took me months to get a copy that was cheaper than full price… and no I’m on the look out for the rest of them because I need to get the rest of them! This tells the tale of a young girl who finds a strange necklace (which turns out to be a magical stone). With the help of her brother, she goes to save Mam and comes across some interesting characters on the way! This is a brilliant fantasy story with robots, talking rabbits, strange alien creatures and a walking house. Just brilliant! My kids are desperate for more in this series… so if anyone knows where I can get cheap copies, let me know!

Best Friends – Shannon Hale

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“As Shannon grows a little older, the rules of friendship always seem to be changing, leaving her guessing and trying her best to just keep up. “Best Friends” shares its predecessor’s frankness, compassion, and enthralling, heartfelt visual storytelling. Junior high, as it turns out, is quite the roller coaster.”

This is actually not the first book in the series (which I didn’t realise before I bought it, ha), however, it is one of those books that you don’t NEED to read book 1 to understand book 2. This tells the trials and tribulations of friendships and growing up… and man can I relate to them! Shannon goes through it all in this! I really appreciated the mention of anxiety in this – the conversation around it and how it is approached is done really well! This is brilliantly illustrated and I enjoyed the parallel story too! I’m going to get my hands on the rest of these now!

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PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE if you have any recommendations for graphic novels for me to buy that would work for my Y6s, I’d love to hear them! Even better if you can tell me how to get them cheap second hand, ha!

S x

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