Flip through the illustrated worlds of action-packed graphic novels
Founded in 1934, DC Comics is one of the largest American comic book companies, one of ‘ The Big Two’. It’s the creator of the DC universe, and the first costumed superhero. DC Comics are responsible for two of the world’s most popular superheroes to this day; Superman
, who first appeared in ‘Action Comics #1’ in 1938, and Batman
who’s first appearance was in ‘Detective Comics #27’ in 1939. Consistently growing to the multimedia, international Marvel Universe it is today, any comic book reader should have a shelf full of bursting DC Comics.
The main rival of DC Comics, the other one of ‘The Big Two’, Marvel Comics crashed onto the scene in 1939, originally under the name ‘Timely Comics’. Marvel distinguished itself from their competitors by primarily focusing on storylines set in the real-world. It is also known for characters with emphasised human qualities, including fallibility. The first Marvel Superhero, The Human Torch
, is a perfect example of this. In 1961, Stan Lee with commissioned to create superhero specific comics, alongside illustrator Jack Kirby. They introduced cross-over storylines, characters meeting in realistic settings, and explored social issues. The latter made huge strides in broadening the genre’s appeal the wider adult audiences, and gaining cult hero status for the late Stan Lee
VIZ Media is the largest American publisher and producer of Japanese pop culture. Founded in 1986, it as dominated the industries of anime, manga, and gaming. VIZ Media is the English language publishers of global bestselling series including Masashi Kishimoto’s Naruto
, Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba
, and My Hero Academia
. VIZ also publish books under Pokemon license, bringing the characters to life with activity and colouring books and annuals. If you’re looking for a host of outcasts, underdog heroes, action-seekers, and adventurers, then anime from VIZ is where it’s at.
Graphic novels for kids and teens
Comic books and graphic novels for kids have seen a sharp increase in popularity. Ideal for reluctant readers and bookworms alike, they have entered mainstream literature and are regularly recommended by educators and children’s development specialists. Perfect for kids who find blocks of text in books daunting, comic books are visually engaging in addition to the storytelling. With just as much character development as other books, and often complex plots and world building, graphic novels and comics improve reading comprehension skills. No matter your child’s reading level, these books are enriching and fun reads for all kids.
Popular bestselling graphic novels and comics for kids: Dog Man
, the tales of a heroic dog-human hybrid cop on the endless pursuit of justice, perfect for kids aged 6-9. Asterix
follows the misadventures of Gaulish warrior villagers; they are the last of their kind fighting against the Roman Republic for their culture, aided by a magic potion which provides superhuman strength. This hilarious set of quarrels with quirky heroes is great for any kid aged between 7 and 11. For older kids and young adults, Heartstopper
offers a relatable, romantic-comedic real world story full of teenage angst, relationships, and the LGBT+ experience. Now a hit Netflix adaptation, it’s an easy pick for YA fiction with the graphic novel structure.