Thursday, September 1, 2011

Graphic Novels for Middle School

I was very happy to see this post about graphic novels on The Book Whisperer's Blog. I have read research about the positive effects of reading graphic novels and this supports that idea. I have significantly increased my collection of graphic novels and manga this year. Last year when I moved to the library the only manga series was Naruto. They were VERY popular so I knew I wanted to increase the collection. This summer I added many more series including Tsubasa, Shaman King, Hikaru No Go, Dragon Ball Z, Kitchen Princess, Maximum Ride, Zelda, One Piece, Full Metal Alchemist, Cross Game, Library Wars, Chibi Vampire, Choco Mimi, Bleach, Bakuman, My Boyfriend is a Monster, Claymore, Kamichama Karin Chu, Tegami Bachi, Yu-Gi-Oh Gx, Yuyu Hakusho, Whistle and more.

While some are not technically manga or graphic novel, I have purchased many titles that will appeal to the Wimpy Kid reader including Totally Lame Vampire, Smile, HappyFace, Milo, Doodlebug, The Popularity Papers, The Strange Case of the Origami Yoda, The Accidental Genius of Weasel High, Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide to Not Reading, The Defense of Thaddeus A. Ledbetter, Harry Potter and the Deathly Boring, Kill Shakespeare, Max Quigley: Technically Not a Bully, Meanwhile, Page by Paige, Splurch Academy series, and My Sister the Vampire.
Many of these I heard about in this article in School Library Journal.

There are even a few fun nonfiction graphic books I purchased including the Monster Science Graphic Library (Vampires & Cells, Bigfoot & Adaptation) and Yummy: The Last Days of a Southside Shorty.

The new manga section is always teaming with students. The books have stayed high on our top ten lists. I even had students hugging me the first week of school when they saw our new area. I have had several requests for other series that I'm considering. A few I think might be too mature, but I will check it out.

School Library Journal has an archived webinar on graphic novels here if you would like more information.

I am always open to more suggestions so I would love to hear about manga series you have in your schools.


  1. Thanks for all these great titles suggestions! I started increasing my library's collection of manga and graphic novels last year (we only had about 20 titles before) and about 75% of them checked-out in the first week!! I plan on spending a sizeable chunk of my budget on more this year.

  2. @Diana You're welcome. If you have any suggestions I would love to hear them. There are SO many series to choose from.

  3. Were your kids graphic novel readers to begin with? I don't have many but hope to convert some. I like American Born Chinese and Robot Dreams and can't wait for Bake Sale. And Stitches - but that's sooooo sad.

    I finally figured out my slideshow problems, but it still won't work in Chrome for some reason. If you want to see it, it's here: I like the colors too! Maybe next year we can switch the carpet though. I love the gutter shelves. Do you have those? Super fun!

  4. @Miss Christine I had a small group of devoted manga readers that asked me for more. I delivered and now they are flying off the shelves! I really like American Born Chinese, Level Up and Page by Paige. Lots to choose from now! I don't have any gutter shelves, but I love Jim Trelease so if he says it is good, it is!:)

  5. Does anyone working with kids coordinate with the local school libraries? Our budget is about to be slashed and as much as I want to augment the manga collection, it may not be possible.

  6. I am a literacy coach working with inner-city hispanic kids at the middle school level. Does anyone know of any GNs that would resonate particularly for this population?


    1. One that pops in my mind right away is Yummy. It is a graphic biography. We are in a rural area, but my Hispanic students love all of our manga listed above, especially those still learning English. The Amulet series is popular with my younger students and they aren't quite graphic novel but they also love the Big Nate books and all the Wimpy kid books, which also come in Spanish.

  7. This comment has been removed by the author.

  8. Tamara -
    Do you have any idea why VIZ marks Library Wars for Older Teens?