Graphic novels are books that use both illustrations and words to tell a story. They come in many diverse genres and are great for even the most reluctant readers. For a long time, graphic novels were considered as the inferior form of literature, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, they help foster a love of reading and the presence of illustrations helps aid visual and verbal literacy. There are countless benefits to reading graphic novels for children and adults alike. Here are just a few:
- Graphic Novels Build Vocabulary
Did you know that graphic novels often use advanced vocabulary? There is a common misconception that the lack of text makes graphic novels less beneficial for language learners. However, fewer words does not equal simpler words. The language found in graphic novels is often more complex when compared to regular books. Think about it this way, if the book has limited space for text to tell the story, every word must count!
- Graphic Novels Develop Visual Literacy
Visual literacy is the ability to understand, create, and talk about images. As we live in an increasingly visual and digital world, it’s important to critically think about the images we are exposed to on a daily basis. Graphic novels help simultaneously develop verbal and visual literacy. If you have ever read a graphic novel, you know that reading the text alone is never enough to get the full story. You have to interpret the images for clues on characters and plot development.
- Graphic Novels Aid Comprehension
In graphic novels, images and text work together to create meaning. The images add additional context clues that do not exist in novels without illustrations. This is why graphic novels are becoming increasingly popular in schools, where students read graphic novel adaptations of classic literature like Moby Dick, Pride and Prejudice, or any Shakespearean Play.
- Graphic Novels Engage Reluctant Readers
Graphic novels provide a great alternative for children and adults who are reluctant to reading traditional novels. The highly visual content makes graphic novels more engaging and helps readers avoid falling into a reading slump. With so many genres to choose from, there is a graphic novel out there for everyone!
- Graphic Novels Are Fast-Paced
Graphic novels offer quick-read alternatives which means that you can read more books. With graphic novels, you do not have to worry about that “to read” pile continuously growing.
Our advice? Don’t shy away from graphic novels – embrace them! Here are just a few options for children and adults to start a lifelong love of graphic novels.