Best Books for Kids

The Best Graphic Novels for Eight Year Olds

selected by Helen

"And what is the use of a book," thought Alice, "without pictures or conversation?" Eight-year-old Helen feels the same. Here she tells us why reading graphic novels is fun, relaxing and definitely not for babies – and recommends her current five favourites.

Interview by Zoe Greaves

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Why do you like graphic novels?

I like graphic novels because they’ve got more pictures in than normal stories and I find this is good for my imagination. I also like them because sometimes they’ve got really funny sentences in them. They’ve got really funny speech bubbles in them and I like the “biff”, “boom”, “grrrr” parts. They are funny.

You like reading normal chapter books as well don’t you?


Who are your favourite chapter book authors?

Roald Dahl and Michael Morpurgo, mostly. But I like lots of different books.

Do you think graphic novels are better than normal chapter books?

They are a bit easier to read than normal chapter books which is very relaxing.

So, they are relaxing and they are funny?

Yes. The stories are quite long – they aren’t babies books. The pictures make it more fun to read the stories.

The first book you’ve chosen is Drama by Rainia Telgemeier?

I like it because it is a story book but it has tonnes of facts in it – especially about Shakespeare – I learned that he was a really famous play writer. He wrote a play called Twelfth Night. I liked the main character in the book – she is funny and a bit crazy and she is in love with a boy called Jesse. It’s a story about really nice and kind friends. It made me want to do a play with my friends. I’ve read all Rainia Telgemeier’s books – Smile was a bit gory as it’s about a girl’s teeth. Sisters is my other favourite. Ghosts is quite scary – exciting scary not nightmare scary. She also did The Babysitters Club series – I love these.

Your second choice is Tintin in Tibet by Herge

I like this because there’s a lot of adventure and snow and a cute little dog called Snowy. I really love dogs. It’s a really funny and exciting story. You can learn new big words too – like “alpine”. I learned this word from Tintin. I learn lots of words from Tintin books. I like lots of Tintin books – not just this one. My daddy has been to Tibet. There are things you can learn that are true about Tibet in this book. And some things that aren’t true – like the Yeti.

Your third choice is Asterix and Cleopatra by Rene Goscinny. Why do you like this book so much?

I really enjoyed this book because Asterix (who is a tiny guy with a big moustache) and his friend (who is a big guy) called Obelix are very, very funny. Asterix is the fast guy and Obelix is the strong guy and they both fall in love with Cleopatra. It’s funny because they act really weird around her. There’s a puppy in this book too called Dogmatix. I like it when there is a dog or puppy in a book.

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You can learn stuff about history in all the Asterix books – like in the Asterix and Caesar’s Gift book how the Gauls defeated the Romans. In this one I learned that Cleopatra was the queen of the Egyptians.

Your fourth choice is Brazen by Penelope Bagieu

Brazen is a book about rebel ladies. This means that they are very famous and a bit different – like the bearded lady and the girl who looked like a witch and became the most famous actress in films, she was called Margaret Hamilton. It’s like reading a fairy tale book – but grown-up fairy tales that are actually true. The ladies are all real. There are so many ladies in the book – it makes me feel that I’m one of them too. Well, I’m just a normal girl but reading the stories makes me feel proud of myself.

Your fifth and final choice is The Greek Myths by Marcia Williams

I like myths because they are really fun stories. I like myths about unicorns because I like unicorns. Myths aren’t real. But I’m not sure about Jesus. I think he is a myth. Myths were made up a really long time ago. Like the lady with the snakes on her head – it’s probably not real but it happened so long ago maybe it was true? Or sort of true. Like Jesus. I think the lady with the snakes on her head isn’t too scary. Snakes are beautiful creatures. I think that lady would have looked beautiful with all those snakes on her head – especially if they closed their eyes. I think myths are exciting stories. Like the men who made wings and went too close to the sun and because the wings were stuck together with wax the wings broke and they fell. They are really good stories. I like the pictures in this book because it helps me imagine it.

Interview by Zoe Greaves

July 16, 2018

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Helen loves reading, dogs, puppies and all animals – but especially dogs. Her favourite hobbies are swimming and kayaking. She and her friends are currently working on a secret project (secret from their parents) to build a real jet-pack because they want to fly. They think a jet-pack will be more fun than a rocket.