What are graphic novels?

24 September 2019

What are graphic novels?

Graphic novels are much more than just comic books. They are a fine blend of high quality artwork and well-crafted text, designed to give the perfect reading experience.

Graphic novels are a combination of text and sequential art. One could also call it a combination of literary and cinematic techniques, making it a very immersive medium. This helps in clarifying complex ideas and stimulating story lines that readers can engage with. Graphic novels can promote oral and visual literacy, in addition to a love for reading. A good collection of graphic novels appeals to young people who might otherwise be reluctant to explore the library.

Graphic novels read like a book. Unlike comic books, they delve deeper into the story lines of characters and history, not just action, and they complete the full arc of a narrative by the end of the novel.

This dive into the story and history of characters and events is what sets graphic novels apart. Intricate story lines are, of course, told in comic books, but it can take months before a certain history is explained from a past issue, and it’s easier to introduce and remove characters without much consequence to the overall story line.

Graphic novels have to focus on character development and consistent details, giving me, as a reader, a more satisfying experience.

Layouts can also be designed to be either text heavy or text light, this versatility gives them a universal appeal. Graphic novels are available on a wide range of subjects ranging from adaptations of the great classics, to mythology, history, original stories and even self-help, cookery and gardening. The scope, range and possibilities are limited only by the imagination. Graphic novels are essentially a sequence of text and images that tell a story in a coherent manner.

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