2 Great DC Graphic Novels for Kids

Batman and Robin and Howard by Jeffrey Brown. DC Graphic Novels for Kids, 2021. 9781401297688. 160pp.

This is my favorite of this new line of branded DC Graphic Novels for Kids. It features one of the more recent Robins, and the youngest — Damian Wayne, Batman’s son. After Damian punches the wrong guy while on patrol, his dad makes him take a break and go to a new school. There he meets Howard, a cool kid with whom Damian has a low-stakes conflict as they become friends, fall out a bit, and then become even better friends. The kids’ awkwardness is exaggerated by Brown’s art, which emphasizes the same quality in his version of Batman and Bruce Wayne as a dad. There’s a lot of soccer in the book, and a lot of content about different kinds of cells, and a very cool idea for a science project that will excite many kids (and give them an excuse to eat a lot of candy). Perfect.

Amethyst: Princess of Gemworld by Shannon Hale and Dean Hale, art by Asiah Fulmore. DC Graphic Novels for Kids, 2021. 9781779501226. 160pp.

I’m a huge fan of the Hales’ Rapunzel graphic novel and their Princess in Black series. They do an equally good job with this relaunch of the Amethyst series, which includes beautifully colored, manga-inspired art by Fulmore. Amethyst is a bit younger than in her original incarnation. At the beginning she’s sent to our world, where her magic doesn’t work, as punishment. But she and her babysitter are stuck here, and without magic they gradually lose their memories of home. That only lasts until Amethyst is pulled through a magic portal back to Gemworld, which she has to save. Her family has disappeared. An impossibly powerful evil is rampaging through the land. Amethyst is the only hope. (It’s a pretty standard story structure, but it’s more fun and lighthearted than that sounds.) If it catches on at your library, expect to see lots of very young girls with purple hair in addition to your purple-haired library folk.



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