45 Great Comics and Graphic Novels for Kids

Now that you know why kids should read comics, you need a list of the best comic books and graphic novels for your children. All of the titles listed I’ve read and fully recommend. If you want to add to this list, please do so in the comments. (Also, I’m including hybrids, books with both comic and narrative.)

SHOP graphic novels and comic books listed.

Early Readers 4-6 year olds

Early Readers Graphic Novels
Elephant and Piggie
books by Mo Willems

Fly Guy books by Tedd Arnold

Owly books by Andy Runton

Toon Books
Silly Lilly What Will I Be Today
Benny and Penny Just Pretend
Nina in That Makes Me Mad
Benjamin Bear in Fuzzy Thinking

Goalkeeper Goof (My First Graphic Novel)

Balloon Toons
Balloon Toons: Zoe and Robot, Let’s Pretend

Elementary 6 – 10 year olds

Elementary Graphic Novels A
Nursery Rhyme Comics: 50 Timeless Rhymes from 50 Celebrated Cartoonists
50 classic verses illustrated in comics form by today’s greatest cartoonists  and currently my new favorite book!

Magic Pickle Graphic Novel series by Scott Morse
Hilarious if you like puns; I do.

Bone series by Jeff Smith

Taro and the Magic Pencil by Sango Morimoto

Amelia Rules series by Jim Gownley

The Secret Science Alliance and the Copycat Crook by Eleanor Davis
A group unlikely science-geek friends solve a mystery; great story.

Geronimo Stilton series
Lots of kids love these; I felt distracted by the text and fonts.

Walt Disney Treasury by Don Rosa

elementary graphic novels B
Archie by various

Mal and Chad: The Biggest, Bestest Time Ever!
Reminds me a bit of Calvin and Hobbes.

Amulet series and Copper by Kazu Kibuishi
Some of the best art you’ll see!!

Frankie Pickle (a hybrid) by Eric Wight
I think Wight is a genius – I adore these books!

Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney

The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick (hybrid-ish, hard to classify)
A very unusual way of storytelling, makes you think. It’s a beautiful story!

The Popularity Papers by Amy Ignatow
We love these books.

Adventures of Tintin by Herge
The art and storytelling is amazing but the original books are 80 years old and include many cultural stereotypes. I’m not sure if the new books are updated. Does anyone know?

Elementary Graphic Novels C
Rapunzel’s Revenge by Shannon Hale & Dale Hale
One of my favorite books, not just graphic novels, EVER! 

DuckTales by Carl Barks
Can’t forget the classic Disney comics.

Asterix the Gaul by Rene Goscinny and Albert Uderzo
An original, oldie but goodie.

Classics Illustrated published by Papercutz

Dragonbreath by Ursula Vernon
I think these are hilarious.

Be Confident in Who You Are by Annie Fox (iPad app)
Very well conceived and written.

Meanwhile… (hybrid) by Jules Feiffer
Check out his other books, he’s amazing.

Big Fat Little Lit
edited by Art Spiegelman & Francoise Mouly
A varied collection of comics curated by the best editors the graphic novel world!

Elementary Graphic Novel D
DC Super Heroes: The Ultimate Pop-Up Book by Matthew Reinhart
You haven’t seen pop-ups like these ever, they are stunning.

Detective Blue by Steve Metzger, illustrated by Tedd Arnold
Looks like a picture book and is a great introduction to graphic novels.

Bake Sale by Sarah Varon
An unusual story about a cupcake.

Little Vampire by Joann Sfar
Not scary, very cute!

Zita the Spacegirl by Ben Hatke
This adventure of friendship and bravery will appeal to both boys and girls.

The Unsinkable Walker Bean by Aaron Renier
The first in a series, we are following a hero on a pirate ship trying to return the cursed skull to the sea-witches. It’s a great opening book – I only wish the other books were written so I could keep reading!

Olympians
Hera: The Goddess and her Glory by George O’Conner
See JJ in the photo above? She’s reading Hera! I love this photo because it captures how entranced she was with the story. Both my kids love O’Conner’s graphic novels and can’t wait for his next book, Hades. If you’re big Greek mythology fans, check out his other books, Athena and Zeus: King of the Gods.

Barrons Graphic Classics:
Hamlet
Jane Eyre

Also Check Out

– free online kid-friendly comics and graphic-novels at Kidjutsu.com.

Japanese Manga!

– Cartoon coloring pages

– Comics on the iPad

Smash Comic – fun web comic!

– 2011 Eisner Awards Comic-Con winner for the Best Publication for Kids was Tiny Titans, by Art Baltazar and Franco (DC) and the Best Publication for Teens was Smile, by Raina Telgemeier (Scholastic Graphix).

– more Graphic Novel recommendations and reviews on The Graphic Novel Reporter as well as how Melissa Burke-Markuqrt, 11th grade English teacher, uses graphic novels in the classroom.

School Library Journal recommendations.

RECENT POSTS:

 8 Reasons Why Your Kids Should Read Comics

  • http://www.ReadAloudDad.com Read Aloud Dad

    Lovely list!

    BTW, although the Tintin books are not updated – they are still fantastic reads. Unmissable!

    Read Aloud Dad

    • http://imaginationsoup.net Melissa Taylor

      thanks for that info, Chris. I was a Tintin addict as a kid, too.

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  • http://imaginationsoup.net Melissa Taylor

    Also, you might like Americus from MK Reed and Jonathan Hill — I haven’t read all of it yet but it’s interesting because of the issues it brings up.

  • http://www.readtomepublishingllc.com Martha Rodriguez

    Perfect timing to go with my blog post about reluctant readers. I will link from my post to this one to help parents find just the right comic for their kiddo!
    Thanks,
    Martha

    • http://imaginationsoup.net Melissa Taylor

      thanks, Martha! Let us know your post so we can visit.

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  • T. Beard

    Thank you for posting these recommendations. I have a three-year-old son who loves for me to reading anything to him (even poetry!); however, I agree that kids should be exposed to all kinds of literature and anticipate he will discover comics no matter my feelings. It is great to have some place to start as the comics with which I am familiar are not appropriate for his age.

  • http://www.brimfulcuriosities.com Janelle

    No Babymouse? We’re trying out that series this week. Not sure what my daughter thinks. Totally agree with you on your Rapunzel’s Revenge rec. That is an awesome book.

    • http://imaginationsoup.net Melissa Taylor

      totally forgot about Babymouse. It’s one that many kids love — I’m sort of tepid about it myself but . . . let me know what you think.

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  • Hooper Triplett

    As an regular reader of graphic novels, I love this topic especially as the father to two girls.

    In addition to the your selection, I recommend Scary Godmother books by Jill Thompson. Very sweet and funny stories about the monsters and witches. The kids act and sound like real children – they just look a little different.

    Also Jellaby books by Kean Soo. Ten-year old Portia meets a shy purple monster and has plenty of adventures. Previews can be seen at http://www.secretfriendsociety.com/index.php.

    • http://imaginationsoup.net Melissa Taylor

      thank you for these ideas, Hooper! Can’t wait to read them. :)

      • http://www.bing.com/ Mateen

        Your website has to be the elcetnroic Swiss army knife for this topic.

  • Heather Mellenger

    Thanks for the list. The Nursery Rhyme one looks great! We love Binky the Space Cat (3 book series so far) and Sticky Burr: Adventures in Burrwood Forrest (2 books so far plus some online adventures).

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  • M Cubed

    Thanks so much for this list. I have become suspicious that my son would love graphic novels, but I have absolutely no interest in them, and never have. I had no idea where to even look for such things. This has given me a great place to start.

  • Gretchen Haussenflavelknocker

    Don’t forget the Missile Mouse series. My boys won’t put them down!

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