New Middle School Graphic Novels
I have always enjoyed reading graphic novels since I was in elementary school when my Dad first introduced me into the world of Marvel. I have recently found a few graphic novels from 2016 which I gave a booktalk on at the ITEM Conference in Brooklyn Park this October. There are three options below that I think would be extremely popular and have a wide readability for Middle school students.
Skye is sent away to summer camp by her father and step-mother, or step-monster as Skye likes to call her, and is determined to not make any friends and have a horrible time. It immediately starts off on the wrong foot when she boards the wrong bus and is taken to Camp Midnight where all the other campers, except her new friend Mia, are actual monsters. Skye has to be careful to not reveal that she is just a normal human and pretends to not want to show her monster side. She makes it her goal to participate in all of the monster activities and ends up having a great time in the end and making a few friends. This graphic novel is very funny with Skye’s dry sense of humor and will appeal to kids who feel like they don’t fit in or just want a good laugh.
Camp Midnight by Steven T. Seagle and Jason Adam Katzenstein. 9781632155559. April 2016. Gr 4-7.
Ben has the special ability to be able to jump into other’s dreams. However, this ability means that almost every night Ben gets no sleep for himself. When Ben’s mom takes him to sleep specialist he finds friends and fellow classmates who are stuck in their dreams by a nightmare monster. He knows it is up to him to rescue his friends from their dreams and defeat the monster and willingly puts himself into a dangerous sleep. Along the way to rescuing his friends he finds out that he is a dream jumper and that another evil entity has been taking over the dream world. He finds help from other dream jumpers and learns more about his abilities in the dream world and how to rescue his friends. This is the just the first graphic novel in the DreamJumper series so readers will be able to look forward to Ben’s next adventure.
Nightmare Escape by Greg Grunberg and Lucas Turnbloom. 9780545826037. June 2016. Gr 5-8.
In 1860s New York City, Alexander and Cleopatra have joined the Black Hook Gang to survive the streets until their missing father comes home. The twins see an ad in the newspaper with a wealthy father looking for his two missing twin boys, Alex and Cleo leave town to travel to San Francisco to be those missing twins. Their first stop is in New Orleans and they meet another set of twins with the same goal of assuming the identity of the missing twins. The twins become separated and Alex is taken to work on a ship and Cleo stows away on another to eventually meet with Alex again. Through all of this the twins are hunted by a group of pirates convinced the twins have the keys to a hidden treasure. This is just the first graphic novel in a new series and with the amount of adventure and action it is sure to pull readers in.
Compass South by Hope Larson and illustrations by Rebecca Mock. 9780374300432. June 2016. Gr 4-8.
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