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Best graphic novels for children

Best graphic novels for children
In the past children were often discouraged from reading graphic novels because they weren’t seen as ‘real’ books but, in fact, the vocabulary, storylines and humour are highly sophisticated and offer reluctant readers a brilliant introduction to the world of books. Children’s book expert and founder of children’s book review platform Toppsta, Georgina Atwell, picks 10 of the best to capture children’s imagination.


Bumble and Snug and the Angry Pirates by Mark Bradley

(£6.99, Hodder Children’s Books)

Bugbops are little monsters filled with BIG feelings! Join best friends Bumble and Snug as they embark on an adventure with some VERY angry pirates, learning about the world outside and inside along the way.

A full-colour graphic novel, perfect for readers just starting to enjoy stories independently, for visual readers and for sharing with grown-ups.

Bunny vs Monkey by Jamie Smart

(£8.99, David Fickling Books)

Bunny vs Monkey started with a weekly comic strip in The Phoenix comic; in 2014 the graphic novel books were launched with collections of the duo’s crazy adventures. It's very, very funny, and the whole full-colour graphic novel series can be read in any order. 

Life in the forest has never been the same for Bunny and friends (Weenie the Squirrel, Pig the pig, Action Beaver and Skunky the Inventor) since Monkey's rocket crash-landed and he decided to take over! Bunny is determined to put a stop to Monkey's mayhem, if only he didn't have to deal with things like an out-of-control shark tank...

InvestiGators by John Patrick Green

(£7.99, Macmillan Children’s Books)

Great for new readers, the InvestiGators series written and illustrated by John Patrick Green is a full-colour, laugh-out-loud treat.

Mango and Brash are the InvestiGators: sewer-loving agents of S.U.I.T. and scourge of supervillains everywhere! Using Very Exciting Spy Technology and tried-and-true, toilet-based travel techniques, the InvestiGators are undercover and on the case. Presented in a comic strip format, this is a wordplay-packed cartoon you can read!

Dog Man by Dav Pilkey

(Scholastic, £8.99)

Diagnosed with ADHD and dyslexia as a child, author Dav Pilkey was so disruptive in the classroom that he ended up spending lots of time in the hallway creating his own original comic books – the very first adventures of Dog Man and Captain Underpants!

This wildly popular, fresh and funny series appeals to readers of all ages and explores empathy, kindness, persistence, and the importance of being true to one's self. The small blocks of text and comic styling make it easy to pick up and dip in and out of, even if your child hasn't shown much interest in books.

Treasure Island (Graphic Revolve: Common Core Editions)

(£5.02, Amazon)

Stevenson's wonderful tale of pirates and buried treasure is told in a colourful graphic novel, providing an excellent introduction for younger readers. Theme discussions and study questions are also included.

If your child enjoys this, introduce them to lots of other classics (like A Christmas Carol, Peter Pan, The Hound of the Baskevilles and Robin Hood) with the Graphic Revolve: Common Core Editions series.

Kitty Quest by Phil Corbett

(£8.99, Simon & Schuster)

Professional monster slayers (and fearless felines) Woolfrik and Perigold face off against startling ghosts, rampaging monsters and bumbling wizards in this fast-paced, wonderfully silly graphic novel debut. Who could resist marauding monsters, bewitched burritos and a huge number of cat puns?

It's Dog Man meets The Lord of the Rings!

Stormbreaker Graphic Novel by Anthony Horowitz, Antony Johnston, Kanako & Yuzuru Yuzuru

(£12.99, Walker Books)

Suitable for readers aged 9+, the Alex Rider spy books are best-selling, adrenaline-fuelled page-turners about a teenage spy who is forcibly recruited into MI6 after the mysterious death of his guardian. This bold, stylish graphic adaptation of Alex Rider's very first mission captures the storyline and characters but the text is less daunting than the original book, making it a great choice for more reluctant readers. 

Fully illustrated versions of a number of Alex's schoolboy to superspy adventures are available if your child enjoys this first title.

Roy of the Rovers: Kick-Off by Rob Williams

(£9.99, Rebellion)

The greatest football comic of all time! Written by Rob Williams (Amazing Spider-Man, Star Wars, Judge Dredd), with art from Ben Willsher, this is the first awesome footy adventure in the Roy of the Rovers series (Roy of the Rovers fiction titles with no illustrations are also available).

Languishing at the bottom of League Two, Melchester Rovers is out of money and out of luck, but sixteen year old Roy Race always dreamt of playing for them. With his natural talent and powerful left foot, can Roy break into the Rovers’ first team and bring back the glory days?

A Wrinkle in Time: The Graphic Novel by Madeleine L'Engle, adapted and illustrated by Hope Larson

(£10.99, Square Fish)

This graphic novel adaptation of Madeleine L'Engle's Newbery-Award-winning classic introduces a new generation of readers to Meg and Charles Wallace Murry, Calvin O'Keefe, and the mysterious trio of guardian angels known as Mrs Whatsit, Mrs Who and Mrs Which, the memorable characters who fight off a dark force and save our universe.

Embark on a perilous quest through space and time with this quirky, page-turning read, faithful to the original story but very accessible to new readers.

Artemis Fowl: The Graphic Novel

(£12.99, Puffin)

Introduce your child to the best-selling Artemis Fowl series with this graphic novel version to help them access the story and characters with ease. Even kids who aren't keen on reading might find themselves hooked by the vibrant, eye-catching illustrations and decide to try the fiction version of the story of twelve-year-old Artemis Fowl, brilliant criminal mastermind and accidental fairy kidnapper. Because these aren't pastel fairy tale fairies, they're armed and extremely dangerous...

Reading recommendations, children's book reviews, book competitions and more

Fantastic new books are being published all the time, but when faced with so much choice it can be difficult to know where to start. Whether you’re a busy parent, a generous grandparent, teacher or librarian, Toppsta is THE place where readers recommend the very best books to each other. Every review on Toppsta helps children, parents, grandparents, librarians and booksellers discover the very best books for children. 

To read recommendations for the latest children’s books, visit

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