Do Graphic Novels Count As ‘Real Reading’?

Monday 4 April 2022

Over the past few years children’s graphic novels have been growing in popularity at a rapid pace. Why are they so appealing and do they count as ‘real reading’?  

Graphic novels are manageable books which help the reader to understand the text with the use of illustrations. It is often the bright and colourful illustrations that capture the reader's attention. With less words on a page there can be huge benefits to a reluctant reader as the book doesn’t seem so overwhelming. The subsequent sense of achievement for children when they finish a book is rewarding in so many ways. 

But do graphic novels count as ‘real reading’? The answer is yes! In 2020 Scholastic shared three ways graphic novels benefit reading skills.  

1. Graphic novels are full of text. Sure, they have drawings, illustrations, and sometimes photos, but they also have text that readers must decode, analyse, and comprehend. With graphic novels, readers still must follow plots and character development. They must understand cause and effect, and they must learn about perspective. All these things will improve their reading comprehension.  

2. Graphic novels are engaging. Often, especially for reluctant readers, graphic novels add the extra support children need to help them through a text. They tend to be particularly captivating for children, and the combination of text and pictures provides context for stories that they may not otherwise completely understand.  

3. Graphic novels are high-quality reading material. Just like traditional novels, graphic novels have exciting and complex plots, characters, and conflicts. The plots have twists and turns. Characters are developed and dynamic. Conflicts are presented, unwound, and resolved like they are in other texts. The only difference is that graphic novels have more images to support the  story's development.  

Pop into one of our libraries and have a browse through our graphic novels. Alternatively, find them online at - but get in fast as they do not stay on the shelves for long.  

Related Links:

 

www.tasman.govt.nz newzealand.govt.nz