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.
Jim Henson’s The Storyteller Giants #2
Written and illustrated by Brandon Dayton.
The second story in The Storyteller Giants series comes from a combined Russian/Norwegian/French fable called “The Tailor’s Daughter.” Although, this is not a book a child in this age range could read on their own, it is an excellent fairytale-like story that will definitely connect with them. That’s largely due to the story, which finds that connectivity through standard mythical archetypes: A tailor has made a promise to a wealthy Lord to have his daughter marry him. Although she is less than thrilled, the daughter obliges. Along the way to the castle she encounters some helpful animals. Of course when she arrives, nothing is as it seems, and she must use her wits to survive.
Brandon Dayton retells the story using narration and his art is angular and detail oriented. The coloring is vivid, and it conveys emotion through shadow and light. Again, children in the age range will not be able to read this without help, but it would make a great curl-up-on-the-couch book along with some other favorites for story time.
Written by Tom Taylor.
Illustrated by James Brouwer.
Letters by Wolfgang Bylsma.
Meet the Nektons! In the first issue of Deep, we get better acquainted with Will (dad), Kaiko (mom), Fontaine (daughter), Antaeus aka “Ant” (son), and Jeffrey (Ant’s pet fish) as they live their life as underwater explorers on their fancy state-of-the-art submarine, the Aronnax. Based off of Tom Taylor and James Brouwer’s graphic novels that inspired an animated Netflix show, The Deep #1 hits the ground running by establishing the characters and their personalities. Based on the strength of this opening issue, I look forward to what’s next in this six-part series.
Having never read the original graphic novels or not having seen the shows, I never once found myself confused by Taylor’s story. His writing is fast-paced and humorous; since this is a family that has been living in close-quarters with one another for some time, there is a casual tone.
Brouwer’s art is lovely. Being in the deep dark part of the ocean, he does a great job showing contrast under water and providing the creeping isolation through the Aronnax’s glowing lights, which emanate in the darker parts of the sea. Overall a good start, both for established fans and fans-to-be.
Justice League/Power Rangers #1
DC Comics/IDW Publishing/$3.99
Written by Tom Taylor.
Art by Stephen Byrne.
In issue number one of this superhero team mashup, Lord Zedd implants a fake explosive Alpha in the Command Center, which results in the Rangers ending up in another universe. During the fight with Zedd, the teleporters are damaged, which sucks both Zack and Zedd to another dimension — the DC Universe. The Power Rangers follow shortly after to discover Batman, who has mistaken Zack for a villain, roughing him up. The standard crossover confusion begins, and a battle ensues between the Rangers, Batman, and Flash. Things escalate when Kimberly/Pink Ranger… well, you’re just gonna have to read this thing. It’s crazy.
A solid start from Tom Taylor (hey, this guy is talented—see above) with what I believe is going to be a fun run. Quick and short dialogue highlighted in different colors and fonts which make it even more engaging to read. Stephen Byrne’s artwork does a great job with conveying the big action. I especially loved the background effects he gave during battle scenes, and how they glow and move off the page. I think this is going to be a great book to add to your reading lists.
Wonder Woman ’77 Meets The Bionic Woman #2
Written by Andy Mangels.
Art by Judit Tondora; coloring by Roland Pilcz.
Lettering by Lois Buhalis and Tom Orzechowski.
The story continues with Diana Prince/Wonder Woman and Jaime Sommers/The Bionic Woman as we start at the funeral for the fallen I.A.D.C. Director, Joe Atkinson. It’s there where Jaime reveals to Wonder Woman that she in fact knows she is also Diana. Also, in this issue we also get more of a reveal on who is really behind CASTRA, and their motives.
I really love the way the story is in line with how the TV shows were produced, and I appreciate Andy Mangels’ humor and bluntness when it comes to the title characters’ speech and actions. I applaud how Diana and Jaime are portrayed as strong females. Judit Tondora and Roland Pilcz’s art makes the story come together as if these were storyboards for a show that could’ve feasibly happened. There is almost a watercolor dreaminess to them. This book continues to be a great read. Fun for those looking to recapture some nostalgia, and fun for those who love to see women kick butt.
(Where we discuss the classics that everyone should read.)
Written and Drawn By Henrietta
A TOON Book, 2015
Written and illustrated by Liniers.
Henrietta just got a brand new box of colored pencils which is like “owning the piece of a rainbow.” She uses them to create a book, which she says are “a world you can carry around with you.” Already, I love the thought behind all of this. Henrietta works on her book as her cat, Fellini, and her stuffed animal, Mandelbaum, look on. She creates the story as she goes and at times is even surprised where her characters are taking her. Which makes it a really cute way to tell a story within a story. There is adventure, surprise, and suspense! Of course, there is a happy and sweet ending.
A TOON level 3 book, this is meant for kids 8-9 year old range to read on their own. Liniers does a fantastic job at keeping the dialogue and story simple for new readers. His artwork also does a great job with the story within a story concept. With Henrietta working on her story the art is very clean-lined and soft. When we see Henrietta’s artwork it looks like a child’s. Bright colors, uneven lines, a little messy. I think kids who pick up this book will really enjoy it, and they may even want to create a book of their own afterwards.
That’s it for this week! Has Books For Babes helped you out at all? We want to know! Feel free to send feedback our way in the comments section below.