Musings From A Bookmammal

G is for GRAPHIC NOVELS/BOOKS–The April A-Z Challenge/Day 7


GWelcome to Day #7 of the April A to Z Challenge, where participants are challenged to create a post every day (except Sundays) corresponding to the appropriate letter of the alphabet. If you’d like to learn more, hit the badge on my sidebar.

I’ll be posting about bookish topics each day of the challenge. Here’s today’s post about my first experience with graphic novels/books:


relishI’d never read any books in the graphic format until about a month ago. I never had any negative feelings about this genre—I just never paid any attention to it. However, I really enjoy reading books about food and cooking, and the book Relish: My Life In The Kitchen by Lucy Knisley kept showing up on various book blogs. I decided to give it a try—and I LOVED it!

I like to cook, and I adore reading about food and cooking, so this book has me written all over it! It contains the author’s memories of growing up as the daughter of a chef and gourmet, as well as her thoughts about how our experiences with food help make us who we are. Plus—there are illustrated recipes! (I’m definitely going to try her recipe for carbonara!) I thought the format of the book might be distracting, but Knisley’s charming drawings PERFECTLY complement her text, and I simply love her writing voice! I originally borrowed this book from the library, but I know I’ll be buying my own copy soon to add to my collection of food writings. I’ll say it one more time—I LOVED THIS BOOK!

As an aside, I know that although more and more of today’s educators are viewing graphic novels as worthy additions to classroom libraries, there are still some who feel that graphic novels are not “real books” and shouldn’t count as “real reading.” I couldn’t disagree more–I think this type of book could be a powerful motivator for kids, especially those who are reluctant or struggling readers. Reading is reading, whatever the format!

Anyway, I’m now on the lookout for more graphic books/novels to try. Do you read books in this genre? What graphic novels/books would you suggest that I try next? Please share!

Author: bookmammal

I love books, reading, writing, cooking, eating, reading while eating, and sharing thoughts about all of the above–plus a bit more! I usually post about topics relating to books and literacy during the week, and then participate in a variety of non-bookish memes on the weekend. Please feel free to join in! Some random things about me– –I have multiple bookshelves in every room of my home except the bathroom. They’re all filled to bursting. They help to make my house my home. –I have two cats who I love dearly, but who I definitely do NOT dress in human clothing. Ever. –I’ve never had a cavity. –I make a mean spaghetti sauce. –I’m a newcomer to yoga and I love it. –My day is not complete without a little chocolate.

18 thoughts on “G is for GRAPHIC NOVELS/BOOKS–The April A-Z Challenge/Day 7

  1. I love The Walking Dead graphic novels. I don’t know if you’re into that kind of book though. It’s really good!

  2. Saints and Boxers (two separate books) are great. Also, I would advise reading Fruit Basket. This series is manga but wonderful. I am not sure what you think about manga as a genre.

  3. Oh I love this! I read Maus, which is a graphic novel about a Holocaust survivor and Persepolis, which is a graphic novel about living/escaping Islamic persecution. Both books are nonfiction, and were much easier to read than I originally expected, and the only ones I have read!

    • I’ve heard of Maus and I know it’s considered a classic in the graphic novel genre. I’m really intrigued about the use of the graphic format to help teach about nonfiction topics, so I may give it a try. Thanks for the reminder!

  4. The University where I work was recently considering a couple of graphic novels as the campus book this year, and I found a couple of really interesting looking non-fiction graphic novels because of it: Feynman, a biography of the quantum physicist, and The Influencing Machine, about the impact of the media.

    The graphic novels I can’t believe I haven’t read yet, meanwhile, are any of the ones by Neil Gaiman. In particular, his Sandman series is supposed to be phenomenal – so much so that I haven’t read it yet because I figure I’d need to get my hands on the whole series in one go!

    And Watchmen is supposed to be on the Time top 100 Novels list, so that would be one as well – it’s a commentary on superhero stories.

    Just a few thoughts! As you noticed, I did my post today on Graphic Novels as well! I mentioned a couple of ongoing series there as well.

    • And the Scott Pilgrim series! What was I thinking leaving that out? They’re almost done re-releasing that all in color, but the original black-and-white is also great.

      • Great recommendations–thanks! I have heard of Scott Pilgrim’s books. And as I wrote in another comment reply above, I’m very interested in the use of the graphic style in nonfiction works. I think the implications for the use of such books in school settings is fascinating. Thanks again for all the suggestions!

  5. I love graphic novels, and I haven’t read this one, so am excited to hunt it down. We are similar in that I adore cooking and baking too, so anything cooking related in the way of books is a real draw for me. Thanks for sharing this–I will be adding it to my Goodreads! 🙂

    I love the graphic novel for children, To Dance. We taught that in the children’s lit. course to future teachers as part of the graphic novel unit. I also enjoyed American Born Chinese! And it’s more like a hybrid picturebook/graphic novel, but Wonderstruck!

  6. I haven’t read a lot of graphic novels, but I came across Alice in the Country of Hearts – basically a manga re-imagining of Alice in Wonderland. I loved it and since then I’ve been on the look out for others. I’ll definitely be checking Relish out.

    • That book sounds really interesting. I think that’s one of the things that intrigues me about this type of book–it allows authors to explore a completely different take on a familiar topic or plot point.

  7. I don’t see this listed here, so I’ll put it down. Anya’s Ghost is a really good YA graphic novel, as is American Born Chinese.

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