Thursday, November 15, 2007

Graphic novels, bulletin boards, & tyrants

Compiling the graphic novel information yesterday, it occurred to me that it had been some time since I updated three book review bulletin boards in the resource center; two of which support graphic novels in the juvenile and regular library circulating collection, and the third supports young adult titles. Each graphic novel board highlights eight new books by presenting details on cover art, book title, call number and location, and a book review with accompanying citation information. They are easily updated displays that give students something to read while looking for materials kits, waiting for the computers to login, and when they are gazing about daydreaming. While compiling the updates (color print, laminate, display) I found something to read, Tiny Tyrant, by Lewis Trondheim and Fabrice Parme.

The cover art caught my eye featuring King Ethelbert himself standing on top of the world, scepter in hand and crown perched on the back of his head, surrounded by his loyal subjects. If that was not enough, the back cover features a wonderful tagline: "What if the most powerful person in your nation was a spoiled brat?"

Tiny Tyrant is a collection of twelve short stories featuring King Ethelbert, his prime minister, loyal staff, and other wonderful assorted characters. Each individual vignette reveals another charming side of the lovely little despot and readers will laugh out loud at his trials, tribulations, and contrariness. In "The Magic of Christmas," Ethelbert is spreading his own brand of cheer demanding only desserts served for his holiday meal. When the palace chef refuses, stating even Santa eats a balanced meal, the Kind determines to visit the North Pole and ask the jolly old elf himself. During the nine hour plane ride to "the north pole," Ethelbert is bored wondering what he is supposed to do.

"We have several novels, plays, philosophical treatises, and autobiographies on board if you wish."

"Whoa, whoa. Next you'll be recommending I read a book." p. 38.

Resplendent in full color, the novel is presented in comic panel format without traditional panel demarcation. Readers are able to follow along easily, characters have different color text balloon, while readily enjoying the many nuances within each panel details. This book has a lot to offer for kids and kids at heart.

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