Top 2012 Children’s and Teen Graphic Novels to Wake Your Brain Cells

Here are my top 10 picks for graphic novels for children and teens this year.  Did I miss any great ones?  Let me know!  As always, these are solely the books I got around to reading this year.

The links below are to my full reviews of each title.

13356190-cardboard chopsticks drama

Cardboard by Doug TenNapel – Take a box made of magical cardboard and one creative kid and you have utopia, right?  Wrong!  Kids will gobble up this dark graphic novel.

Chopsticks by Jessica Anthony – Told only in photographs, this book is filled with tension and twists.  A great pick for older teens.

Drama by Raina Telgemeier – Telgemeier follows up Smile with this equally engaging look at high school theater.

12833770-explorer friends with boys giants beware

Explorer: the Mystery Boxes by Kazu Kibuishi – Seven short stories all deal with opening a mystery box in this rich graphic novel anthology.

Friends with Boys by Faith Erin Hicks – This engaging graphic novel is a combination of realistic homeschooled teen heading to high school and paranormal ghost story.

Giants Beware! By Jorge Aguirre – Claudette is looking to head out to slay the giant that has terrorized her town, but the quest will be a difficult one!  A spunky, strong heroine and some very funny companions make this a quest you will want to take.

legends of zita little white duck

Legends of Zita the Spacegirl by Ben Hatke – A wonderful follow-up to the first Zita book, this time Zita has to deal with fame and an imposter.

Little White Duck: a Childhood in China by Na Liu – A beautiful graphic novel autobiography about the author’s childhood in China during the 1970s.

secret of the stone frog year of the beasts

The Secret of the Stone Frog by David Nytra – Fine black-and-white drawings create a unique graphic novel in this surreal tale of two children who wake up in an enchanted forest and try to return home again.

The Year of the Beasts by Cecil Castellucci – Text alternates with graphic novel in this book that is lush and sizzling.