Mini reviews: graphic novels #3

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, you can check out my ‘2021 reads’ tab in the menu). Let’s get going!

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Investigators Take The Plunge – John Patrick Green

S.U.I.T. headquarters is under attack, and Mango and Brash are going undercover and underground disguised as city sewer workers to unclog a sticky situation. But when their search for the criminal Crackerdile backfires, the toilets they travel through back up—and the InvestiGators take the blame for it! Can Mango and Brash restore their good name and put the real culprit behind bars before the whole city is in deep water?

This second installment in the series continues where the first book left off: laugh out loud funny, clever and brilliantly illustrated. We are big big fans of the first book in my classroom, so when my kids found out I had the new one, they were desperate for me to read (and who am I to deny them?!). This time, Mango and Brash are facing a disaster: a robot combining everything in sight and the evil Crackerdile is back to cause even more mania! What happens when they aren’t allowed to be the A Team anymore? Can they help even when they’re off the case? Or is everything just going to be out of their control once again. I loved all of the puns throughout – they proper made me laugh! Just brilliant – I love the artwork throughout too. Just a massive high 5 from me!

Mr Wolf’s Class: Field Trip – Aron Nels Steinke

Mr. Wolf’s class ventures out on an exciting field trip to the forest! Mr. Wolf’s students are going on a field trip! Everyone gets to sleep in log cabins, come up with fun camp names, and journey through the great woods. They’ll be learning about the oldest and largest trees in the forest, exploring an abandoned ghost town, and toasting s’mores over a campfire. On top of all that, there are kids from a different school to meet!Meanwhile, Aziza and Randy must learn how to work through an argument, and Abdi is worried that he can’t keep up with Henry and his new friends.There’s much to do, see, and learn in the outdoors!

Readers of this blog will know that my Year 6s and I are MASSIVE MASSIVE fans of these graphic novels. Mr Wolf’s Class is a big big fave in my class and you can guarantee that there will NEVER be one in the library for long! As soon as someone finishes one, someone else takes it! When I took this one in, they actually cheered (bless them!). Mr Wolf’s Class class go on a residential and experience so many things that come with going away for a night: falling out, sleeping somewhere new, doing new things and meeting new people. I loved that there was a message in this about how we can be kind to the environment and why it’s important to be! These just always make me smile! As a teacher, I’ve experienced all the things Mr Wolf has to go through… and trust me, residentials are always this eventful! Can’t wait for whatever the next installment is!

Doodleville – Chad Sell

Drew is just a regular artist. But there’s nothing ordinary about her art. Her doodles are mischievous . . . and rarely do they stay in Doodleville, the world she’s created in her sketchbook. Instead, Drew’s doodles prefer to explore the world outside. But after an inspiring class trip to the Art Institute of Chicago–where the doodles cause a bit too much trouble–Drew decides it’s time to take her artistic talents to the next level. Enter the Leviathan–Levi, for short. He’s bigger and better than anything Drew has ever created before. He’s a monster, but a friendly one. That is, until Levi begins to wreak havoc on Drew’s other doodles–and on the heroes her classmates have dreamt up. Levi won’t be easily tamed, and it seems there is a link between the monster’s bad behavior and Drew’s feelings. With the help of her loyal art club friends, will she be able to save Doodleville–and Levi–before it’s too late.

I absolutely adored Cardboard Kingdom by Chad Sell (and I can NOT wait for the second one to come out later this year), so when I saw this name, I JUMPED at the chance to read this! And man, did I love it! This was a total delight! The ending made me particularly happy. I loved all of the doodles and and how each child had their own definite doodle style. I loved that this wasn’t just all happiness and joy, but it dealt with lots of different things so brilliantly well. I think my class will love this! This is a brilliant story all about the power of friendship, teamwork and a how a bit of creativity can beat any problem! I loved that her friends all worked together to help Drew when she needed it most… even though she didn’t want to admit anything was wrong (we’ve all been there!).

Sparks! – Ian Boothby

This Super Dog is the Cat’s Meow! August is a brilliant inventor who is afraid of the outside. Charlie is a crack pilot who isn’t afraid of anything. Together these pals save lives every day. They also happen to be cats who pilot a powerful, mechanical dog suit! Always eager to leap into danger, this feline duo have their work cut out for them as they try to thwart Princess, an evil alien bent on enslaving mankind. Don’t let the fact that Princess looks like a cute, diaper-wearing baby fool you. She’s clever, determined, and totally ruthless. So when Princess and the browbeaten fools she calls servants enact a brilliant and dastardly plan to conquer Earth, August and Charlie pull out all the stops to save the day.

This was a graphic novel I had never heard of before until my friend Richard recommended it on his Padlet (his Padlet is FULL of graphic novel recommendations for mainly primary age; if you’re interested, give me a shout and I can send you the link!). I am so glad I bought this because it is GREAT FUN. Let’s be real, cats > dogs! Superhero cats who save many days… baby down a well, a tornado chasing a school bus and so much more! Not only are these cats superheroes, but they have interesting back stories too! This was loads of fun and made me chuckle a fair few times! I think my kids will love this! The artwork throughout by Nina Matsumoto is just amazing too. I really hope there is more for me to find because I loved this a lot!

Cleopatra in Space: Target Practice – Mike Maihack

When a young Cleopatra (yes, THAT Cleopatra) finds a mysterious tablet that zaps her to the far, REALLY far future, she learns of an ancient prophecy that says she is destined to save the galaxy from the tyrannical rule of the evil Xaius Octavian. She enrolls in Yasiro Academy, a high-tech school with classes like algebra, biology, and alien languages (which Cleo could do without), and combat training (which is more Cleo’s style). With help from her teacher Khensu, Cleo learns what it takes to be a great leader, all while trying to figure out how she’s going to get her homework done, make friends, and avoid detention!

I really enjoyed this! Cleopatra is transported from Ancient Egypt to a futuristic planet where she’s destined to save the day. She’s not so sure about all of this (how could she be the chosen one to save the day?), but with her trusty sidekick and some brilliant target powers, she’s somewhat ready! She hates school and ends up going on a mission to prove she is who the prophecies have said she is. The illustrations in this (especially the fight scenes) are brilliant! Will look into the rest of this series now that I’ve started the first one. I loved that this was a fusion of history and the future together.

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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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