By Stefania Rudd. Do you have little ones in your life who are drawn to the world of comics through movies, cartoons, and video games, but you’re not sure what to start them with, or even know what’s appropriate?
We got you! Books For Babes aims to provide info on what books kids will enjoy, but can also be entertaining for adults. One can never start too early — or too late — in building a solid comic book foundation.
Mega Man #53
Written by Ian Flynn.
Pencils by Ryan Jampole and inks by Gary Martin.
We begin issue #53 with a Mega Man coming off of the events of the “Worlds Unite” storyarc, and trying his best to figure out “what next?” now that battle is over. Mega Man tries to go on with his day-to-day, observing all the Wily Robot Masters serving new functions for Mega City. Just as he decides that maybe he should revert back to Rock, a new (or is it?) threat arrives and a new adventure begins.
Issue #53 is a fun book for many reasons. First, the character himself brings up so many nostalgic feelings from the video game in the 80s and then the cartoon in the 90s. Many adults will probably feel the same way and will enjoy sharing this character with the little one(s) in their lives. Second, the artwork is well done and colorful and compliments the storytelling. (I also think it is helpful for younger readers to identify characters when they first appear a little box is next to them and gives their name and function, as this was done mainly for the robots.) And third, the story itself is easy to follow and interjects humor at just the right time. Overall, a really enjoyable read and one that is easy for younger ones to pick up on their own or read along with an adult.
Avengers Assemble Season 2 #11: Widow’s Run
Written by Joe Caramagna.
Art by Marvel Animation.
As I have mentioned previously, this book, as a tie-in to the Sunday morning cartoon, is a pretty good comic on its own for those just starting to get into the characters they see on lunchboxes and notebooks. What first drew me in to this issue was the image of Black Widow on the cover. In this issue it’s all about her protecting the Avengers (and herself) against the Infinity Stones, while the Guardians of the Galaxy and Dormammu show up to get in the way.
The storyline and artwork work are tied together nicely and it’s a fairly easy read for those in this age group. Like in other issues of this series there are activity pages intermixed with the comic and I really dig that. I think more comics should have that: could you imagine in the middle of Secret Wars getting to do a word jumble activity? Fun times!
The Simpsons’ Treehouse of Horror #21
Edited by Nathan Kane.
The Simpsons’ Treehouse of Horror is published once a year and is exactly what you think it is if you have ever watched any of the Treehouse of Horror episodes, except in comic form!
Three stories (Graveyard Shift, The Left Behinders!, and Springfieldopolis) make up this hefty book and are all based on pop culture references and movies featuring our beloved characters of Springfield. Each story is written, drawn, and colored by a team of different folks who all have a good grasp of “Simpsonese” so the stories have an even tone throughout.
An entertaining read for those who want to get into the Halloween spirit a little early (even though we’ve been getting pumpkin spice stuff since August—calm it down, people!), and good for this age group due to the wordiness of the stories and length, although, with three separate stories it makes it easier to break up the reading.
Jem and The Holograms #7
Written by Kelly Thompson.
Art by Emma Vieceli.
Colors by M. Victoria Robado.
New story arc! New story arc! New story arc! Viral, Part 1! Again, another book that tugs at my nostalgia and introduces beloved characters to younger generations, but it works and it’s good, so no complaints. Although, there are still some unresolved issues from the previous storyarc that we don’t tackle here, instead we just get some new ones: A new love interest of Aja! Fashion internship dreams for Shana! New (and shady) management for The Misfits! A Hacker! If this issue is just the set up, then it’s going to be a fun ride.
Always a safe pick for older teens since the artwork is beautifully done (Vieceli has replaced Sophie Campbell for this story arc) and interesting (I was mesmerized by Synergy). The dialogue has a good back and forth in a recognizably teenage tone. All around a great, lively and cute series.
(Where we discuss the classics that everyone should read.)
Graphic Novel, 2015
By Noelle Stevenson.
I feel incorrect calling my throwback pick a “throwback” since it was released earlier this year. Noelle Stevenson started Nimona as a web comic in 2012 while in school, then HarperCollins published it as a young adult graphic novel in May 2015. Nimona is the story of a shapeshifter-turned-sidekick to a supervillian named Lord Ballister Blackheart, who was once a knight but is now a mad scientist. His nemesis is Sir Ambrosius Goldenloin of the Institution of Law Enforcement and Heroics…the controller of all things in their world.
I love this book because it is so creative and heartwarming. It takes sci-fi and fantasy tropes and presents them in a different, but still familiar way. The center of this story are the relationships among the characters, what is known to be true and what is ultimately revealed to be true. At its core it’s about doing what is right and how in order to move forward you must make peace with your past. Forgiveness is a reoccurring theme.
At 266 pages it seems like a daunting read. However, the artwork of large colorful panels and seamless text allow you to glide right though it (this could easily be finished in a day). I also liked the bonus information we got in the epilogue, Christmas Special comics, and development of the characters at the end of the book. I highly, highly, highly recommend this book for both teens and adults.
That’s it for this week! Did Books For Babes help you out at all? We want to know! Feel free to send feedback our way in the comments section below.