The challenge is simple. Every month, I’m going to read three books from a specific genre. It’s not really about the quantity of reading, but about expanding my reading horizons.

There are certain genres I tend to avoid, like mysteries, crime and chick-lit type books, but I think it’s a good idea to explore what other genres have to offer. This month, I’m taking a quick look at the graphic novel.

But…it’s a comic!

Never, in a million years did I think I’d be reading a comic. I thought I left them behind in primary school. At least, that’s what I thought last week. Then I decided that, if I wanted to get myself past that nasty horse scene in episode one of The Walking Dead, I’d need to read the story first.

walking dead meme

It just so happened that the story started life in comics, which have now been collected into hardback anthologies.

They are brilliant. The only thing that I find a bit ridiculous is the Batman-esque action panels, but even these blend into the background after a while. It reminded me of the storyboarding done during the pre-production phase of movies.

Most of the time I’d prefer to read a book, rather than a load of dialogue and pictures, but there are times when I can’t face reading a novel, and I think graphic novels are a great alternative.

I think I’ll be sticking to The Walking Dead graphic novels for now, but there are tonnes out there.

Graphic novels in the news

A recent study has shown that the graphic novel format makes it easier for kids to retain information that traditional textbooks. (Granted, this may be more useful for non-fiction purposes than, you know, zombie killing.)

Shia LaBeouf landed himself in hot water when he made a film based on a graphic novel, without bothering to ask the author of the novel for permission. He then apologised to the writer, started mocking him across social media when he got the lawyers involved, and finally proclaimed that intellectual property rights were not cool. I guess this means he doesn’t want any royalties from his films then?

Graphic novel blogs and sites

If you’re interested in finding out more about graphic novels or comics, here are some sites to start you off on the road to comic book heaven.