Friday, March 18, 2016

Crazy for Graphic Novels?

Graphic Novels Are For Everyone!

During the month of March, we are encouraging everyone to checkout our graphic novel collection. We have titles for kids, teens, and adults—something for everyone. To do our part, Fine Print writers will be reviewing their favorites all through March. We hope you enjoy our selections and come see more of what your Library has to offer.


I do not typically read graphic novels, which means I have not read any graphic novels unless you count Captain Underpants.  I was coerced into reading Captain Underpants by my son.  Yes, it's true I read whatever he wanted to read. If he was interested in a book, even if I was inwardly cringing, I read it with him. I am a firm believer in reading anything that increases a child's willingness to read. For my son (in second and third grade) Captain Underpants was the way to go. Not only was my child interested in reading captain underpants, but it increased his willingness and fervor to read everything! So, even if it meant reading about Captain Underpants and the Perilous Plot of Professor Poopypants, I was all in. 

Flash forward many years and I am reading another graphic novel. However this time I have selected a more adult graphic novel. I read the Sandman by Neil Gaiman, because I love his novels. He has not written anything I do not enjoy so I figured this was a great place to start. I began with The Sandman vol. 1 Preludes and Nocturnes.  The first thing that struck me was it took me much longer to read than I thought it would.  For me the artwork was distracting.  It took me awhile to get a feel for reading a graphic novel. It does not read the same as a regular book.  I expected a quick easy ready, but this was no easy read.  I found myself rereading passages to make sure I interpreted the passages correctly and then when a passage troubled me...this is a dark graphic novel, I would look at the pictures and reread the text. It was an intense read. 

I like the way Neil Gaiman weaves the past together with the present including the mythic with modern day.  The Sandman is not a comic book. In my opinion it is more than a graphic novel or perhaps all these years I have done a disservice to graphic novels.  Please note that although I am not crazy about graphic novels, that once I finished Preludes and Nocturnes, I needed to know what happens next for Morpheus,... so I checked out the next several volumes in the series. 

I urge you to give graphic novels a try... if you like lighter reading perhaps try Unshelved. It is a hilarious laugh out loud graphic novel, which takes place inside a library. Some of the stories are made up, some of them are based on real life, and some are true stories sent to the writers from readers. Believe it or not the stranger the story, the more likely it is to be true.  

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