Graphic Novels

Read Up with Lead Up

We had a super time at our graphic novel and comics book tasting discovering all of the different things a graphic novel can be.

The evening kicked off with a discussion about how one “tastes” a book to figure out what indications can help you decide if it might be a fit for you or not. Our students came up with a pretty solid list of things one can do besides looking at the title and the cover art:

  • Read the first few sentences.
  • Read the summary.
  • Flip through a book and see if anything catches your eye.
  • Get recommendations from trusted friends or on social media.
  • Check out more books by an author you already like.
  • Check out more books in a genre you like.

Then students discussed what of those things apply to graphic novels and what else you have to consider when tasting a graphic novel like an appealing art design and interesting looking characters. We practiced tasting on some children’s books and then dove into the books.

Our students had some goals to tackle this go-round:

  1. Find at least 3 books you’re interested in.
  2. Tell 3 people about one of the books you’re interested in and why.
  3. Try opening at least 3 books you think you’d hate and give them a chance.
  4. Add the books you’re interested in to your Goodreads ‘Want to Read’ list.
  5. As you’re tasting, be thinking about the question that we’ll try to answer at our next book club: “Should comics and graphic novels be considered literature?”


After a healthy portion of tasting, students took a shot at using visual cues to fill in blank speech bubbling, put panels in order, sort villains from heroes, and then they flipped a coin to find out if they were a superhero or a super villain before crafting their super persona.

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