Archive for the ‘graphic novel’ Category

Image result for gord downie secret path

Beautifully illustrated, large format graphic novel by The Tragically Hip’s Gord Downie, is the true story of Chanie Wenjack, a young Aboriginal boy who escapes Indian Residential School to return home, with tragic results.

See the animated film here.

For adults and older students, read Joseph Boyden’s Wenjack.

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Over the winter break, I read some fantastic graphics. My favourite was Roller Girl, the tale of twelve year old Astrid who signs up for roller derby just as she is losing her best friend to clothes, crushes, ballet and the horrid Rachel. Astrid explores her evolving identity as she faces the uphill battle of learning roller derby and dealing with friendships. Nice first graphic by Victoria Jamieson. My ten year old read it straight through in one sitting.

Lumberjanes is an odd mash up of genres: girl gang, rebels, mystery detectives, fantasy with mythical creatures, adventures and girl friendships all wrapped up in a funny take on girl guides. When I offered it to a group of kids today, they collectively gasped, waving their hands around, asking to be the first to read it.

Nanjing: The Burning City is a powerful historical fiction story of a captain and one of his men that have remained in the city too long and are now surrounded by invading Japanese soldiers. Trying to escape to safety, the two soldiers must choose againa and again: help others or save themselves. For older students, this would make a great lit circle selection.

Space Dumplins is the entertaining story of Violet, who sets out with her two companions to save her father, who has gone missing during a secret mission.

Sugar Falls is a haunting and beautiful story of a young girl who is taken away from her family to an Indian Residential School. Based on a true story. A good lit circle selection for older students.

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When several grade 6 & 7 students raved about this graphic novel, I decided to read it. Expecting a fun, fast plot with little depth, I was surprised to find myself reading a story that examines and critiques economic inequality and child labour within the context of an online virtual world. This virtual world seems awfully similar to Second Life. An interesting read.

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Sunny Side Up

This book was such a surprise. I was expecting another cute memoir type graphic which would be perfect for the hordes who love Raina Telgemeier. I was no expecting the story of a girl who has been affected by her older brother’s addiction issues or alcoholism.

Flipping between the present and recent past, Sunny’s fun summer cabin plans are cancelled and she is shipped off to stay with her aging Grandfather in Florida. She tries to make the best of it, after all this is the land of sunshine, Disneyworld and beaches. Sunny is pretty disappointed to learn that her grandfather’s ‘retirement community’ contains no children and is full of boring old people who eat dinner at 4 pm!

Touching and sweet, this is a lovely story. It would make a solid read aloud or lit circle choice.

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War Brothers: The Graphic Novel

Jacob has a nice life in Uganda, with a loving family and friends at school. When Jacob returns to school with his mates, rebel soldiers attack and abduct the boys, forcing them to become child soldiers. A haunting and grim tale. This would be a great lit circle book.

Cheerleaders versus Robot Nerds. When both groups find out that funding has been cut and that where the remaining money will go will be decided by the student council… the race is on. Who will win? The cheerleaders or the robot nerds? An entertaining teen read.


A funny and painful peek into adolescence set in a school of magic. Not at all like Hogwarts.


Another great book by Jillian Tamaki. This one was written with her sister, Mariko Tamaki. Spending each summer at their beach cabin has always been great for Rose. Rose loves running around with her friend Windy and exploring the beach community. This summer is different. Rose is starting to grow up, her interests are shifting, and Windy still acts like a little kid. Not only that, but something is wrong with Rose’s mom.

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Great Graphics

I’m forever on the lookout for new graphic novels. The kids just love them. Amulet is the most loved and anything by Raina Telgemeier is also very popular. Here are three new graphic novels that I enjoyed.

When Phoebe accidentally rescues a vain unicorn, she is granted one wish. What does Phoebe wish for? That the unicorn become her best friend. Hilarious and sweet. Refreshing to read a unicorn story that is not nauseatingly cute and prissy. Two in the series.

Another strong girl character, Cleopatra time travels to the future to help defend her civilization of the past. She’s adventurous, curious, and a fighter. Two in the series.

Doug TenNapel‘s latest book and first in a new series, Nnewts, is about young Herk who must escape when Llizards attack his family and village.


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Hot Books

What are the Strath kids dying to get their hands on these days?

Marcus’ dad just doesn’t get hime. So now clutzy Marcus is signed up for martial arts!


Imagine not being able to say anything not polite or to do anything bad? Horrendo was cursed as a baby and is having trouble making a good pirate.

Marcus’ dad just doesn’t get him, so now clumsy Marcus is taking martial arts lessons.

The latest and just out.

When Roan doesn’t get into pilot school, he goes to the Jedi Academy. Very popular.

Yes, there’s nothing like a slick book trailer to amp up the need to read a book. If Twilight and Harry Potter had  a baby…

From the odd tv show, comes a few graphic novels.

The third in the trilogy. Long awaited.






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