#Road2Reading Challenge: Comics, Adventure and Fables

When considering books for early readers, I often look for other types of books that would appeal to this audience. Many young children see older siblings or friends reading graphic novels and they want to read these books too. Here are two books that I read recently that should appeal to readers who have developed some vocabulary and skill but still depend on pictures and a shorter length. 

Super Narwhal and Jelly Jolt
by Ben Clanton
Tundra Books (May 2, 2017)
Fiction * Comics * Friendship
Audience: Ages 6 to 9
IndieBound | WorldCat

About the bookHappy-go-lucky Narwhal and no-nonsense Jelly find their inner superheroes in three new under-the-sea adventures. In the first story, Narwhal reveals his superhero alter-ego and enlists Jelly to help him figure out what his superpower is. Next, Narwhal uses his superpower to help a friend find his way back home. In the third story, Jelly is feeling blue and Narwhal comes to the rescue. Ben Clanton showcases the joys of friendship and the power of believing in yourself and others through this irresistible duo.

Last year, I fell in love with Narwhal: Unicorn of the Sea and couldn't wait for the next book to come out. I just picked up a copy at my local indie bookstore and had so much fun reading it. 

Narwhal and his friend Jelly are back and they have transformed into super heroes. However, it wouldn't be a Narwhal book without a twist and some humor. Of course, being a super hero requires super powers but Narwhal's powers are quite unique. 

For readers that are unfamiliar with graphic novels and frames and how to proceed through the story, it may be helpful to read the book together and share some simple tips for navigating the story. 

Where's Halmoni?
by Julie Kim
Little Bigfoot (October 3, 2017)
Fiction * Fables * Multicultural
Audience: Ages 6 to 9
Indiebound | WorldCat

About this bookWhere's Halmoni? is a picture book in a graphic novel style, which follows the story of a young Korean girl and boy whose search for their missing grandmother leads them into a world inspired by Korean folklore, filled with mischievous goblins (dokkebi), a greedy tiger, a clever rabbit, and a wily fox. 

Two young children pay a visit to Halmoni (grandmother in Korean), only to discover she's not home. As they search for her, noticing animal tracks covering the floor, they discover a pair of traditional Korean doors, slightly ajar, new to their grandmother's home. Their curiosity gets the best of them, and the adventure begins when they crawl through and discover an unfamiliar, fantastical world. As they continue to search for their grandmother and solve the mystery of the tracks, they go deeper into the world of Korean folklore and experience their cultural heritage in unexpected ways, meeting a number of Korean-speaking characters along the way. 

Translations to Korean text in the story and more about the folktale-inspired characters are included at the end.

The next book that I discovered recently had a mix of folktale, graphic novel format, and bilingual text. This was super exciting and I look forward to sharing it with students. 

I love being able to introduce readers to another culture through folktales and fables. Also, having the Korean characters included in the book introduce students to another alphabet system and style of writing. 

The siblings in Where's Halmoni? are whisked into an unexpected adventure when they go in search of their missing grandmother. The author's note at the end provide readers with further understanding of the origin of the folktale and the inspiration for the book.

While you wait for Where's Halmoni? to come out, you can enjoy reading the two Narwhal books. Happy reading!

All journeys have a starting place.
This is a weekly place to find books and tools
that you may use with readers at the start of their reading journey.
Join in the conversation at #road2reading.

Each week, Michele Knott and I post about new early readers and transitional chapter books. Don't forget to pop over to Michele's blog to check out her post as well.