This spring sees the debut graphic memoir from picture book star Dan Santat, the return of phenoms Jerry Craft and Nathan Hale, and a diverse bevy of up-and-comers, such as Stephanie Rodriguez, for young readers to discover.

Top 10

Doodles from the Boogie Down

Stephanie Rodriguez. Kokila, Apr. 25 ($20.99, ISBN 978-0-451-48065-1)

Rodriguez’s debut follows a Dominican eighth grader who applies to join Fame (aka New York City’s La Guardia High School) and navigates the high-stakes admissions process against her mom’s wishes. Ages 9–12.

A First Time for Everything

Dan Santat. First Second, Feb. 28 ($14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-250-85104-8)

Caldecott Medalist Santat gets into the graphic memoir game, recalling his junior high class trip to Europe, where he gets teased but meets the delights of a new world. Ages 10–14.


Matt Tavares. Candlewick, Mar. 14 ($22.99, ISBN 978-1-5362-0136-9)

Set in 1975 Indiana, Tavares’s debut dramatizes through the story of an underfunded girls’ basketball team the fight for equity in school sports that resulted in Title IX. Ages 8–12.

Junior High (Tegan and Sara #1)

Tegan Quin, Sara Quin, and Tillie Walden. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, May 30 ($14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-374-31302-9)

Eisner winner Walden draws indie-pop-darling twins Tegan and Sara’s tales of their tweens. There couldn’t be a more winning combo for young comics fans (and hipster parents). Ages 10–14.

Lo and Behold

Wendy Mass and Gabi Mendez. Random House Graphic, May 2 ($13.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-593-17962-8)

Addie’s not out to make friends when her dad’s summer gig drags her across the country-, but when Mateo invites her to play with a virtual reality headset, her mind opens. Ages 10–14.

The Mighty Bite

Nathan Hale. Amulet, Apr. 4 ($14.99, ISBN 978-1-4197-6553-7)

Hale (the Hazardous Tales series) turns from true histories to truly ridiculous prehistoric antics with this buddy story of a trilobite and an ambulatory whale who angle to make it big online. Ages 7–10.

The Ojja-Wojja

Magdalene Visaggio and Jenn St-Onge. HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray, Mar. 7 ($13.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-06-285242-7)

Visaggio pairs up with fellow queer comics indie starlet St-Onge to spice up an eighth-grade friendship triangle with ghosts and demon summoning. Ages 10 and up.

Out There

Seaerra Miller. Little, Brown, June 27 ($12.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-316-59187-4)

The dad-daughter bonding road trip trope gets a cool twist: Julia’s father believes he was abducted by aliens, and the pair are off to Roswell, N.Mex., to commune with his kind. Ages 8–12.

Parachute Kids

Betty C. Tang. Graphix, Apr. 4 ($12.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-338-83268-6)

Drawing from her life, Tang captures the struggle of an immigrant family when Feng-Li’s parents return to Taiwan, leaving her siblings in California to set up home alone. Ages 9–12.

School Trip

Jerry Craft. Quill Tree, Apr. 4 ($14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-06-288553-1)

New Kid fans will line up to hop on the school bus in this newest volume in Craft’s bestselling Newbery Medal– and Coretta Scott King Award–winning series. Ages 8–12.

Middle Grade Comics & Graphic Novels Listings


Danny Phantom: A Glitch in Time by Gabriela Epstein (July 18, $24.99, ISBN 978-1-4197-6054-9). Based on the supernatural-kids Netflix series, this graphic novel picks up where the screened finale left off, then hops the cast through time and space and across the ghost zone, as Danny Phantom faces off once again with Dark Danny. Ages 10–18.

Andrews McMeel

Ferrets from Planet Ferretonia! (Meems and Feefs #1) by Liza N. Cooper (July 25, $12.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-5248-7670-8). Alien ferret bros build a spaceship to sneak off planet Ferretonia, only to crash land on Earth and end up in an animal shelter—until a girl named Liza finds a way to speak their language. Ages 8–12.

Nancy Wins at Friendship by Olivia Jaimes (May 16, $12.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-5248-8092-7) packages a selection of funnies featuring the snarky heroine of the modernized webcomic Nancy designed to speak to the middle school set, including gags about remote learning and robotics club. Ages 8–12.


Misfit Mansion by Kay Davault (July 25, $14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-66590-307-3). Iris, who lives in a group house for abandoned monsters and mythical creatures, longs for a forever family. She’s eager to escape when a human boy unlocks the magic sealing her and friends inside, but it turns out he has ill intentions. Ages 8–18.

Wizkit: An Adventure Overdue by Tanya J. Scott (Apr. 4, $12.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-66590-082-9). The cyclops kitty of a Wizard can magically create snacks and other fun, but Wizkit still gets bored. When a library book starts calling out (literally), Wizkit ventures out to the big world to return it. Ages 8–12.


The Do-Over by Rodrigo Vargas and Coni Yovaniniz (May 23, $13.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-358-39405-1). Mariana’s dad doesn’t respond to her pitches for how to better market his hair salon, so she and two new friends start a rival pop-up shop and style up do’s for all the tweens in town. Ages 8–12.

Pebble and Wren by Chris Hallbeck (Apr. 11, $13.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-358-54128-8) expands the webcomic into a graphic novel following the adventures of a little girl and her live-in monster, who needs tips on how to get along in the human world. Ages 8–12.

Dark Horse

Hotel Rem by Zack Keller and Gabriele Bagnoli (Apr. 25, $14.99, ISBN 978-1-5067-3488-0). All the whimsical and weird figments of dreaming minds get to stay over at this boutique accommodation when people wake up, but one guest wants to ruin the harmonious balance. Ages 8–12.


The Miracle Seed by Martin Lemelman (Mar. 28, $18.99, ISBN 978-0-8028-5590-9) bridges science and religion in a graphic novel based on the true story of Israeli scientists who revived and grew seeds from an ancient Judean date palm that had been dug up in the 1960s by archaeologists. Ages 8–14.

Feiwel and Friends

The Dog Knight by Jeremy Whitley and Bre Indigo (May 16, $14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-250-75672-5). Frankie’s a nonbinary middle schooler who one day protects a dog from bullies and gets swept into the world of the Pawtheon, where canine superheroes challenge Frankie to prove their worthiness to be
heralded the Dog Knight. Ages 9–12.

First Second

The Bawk-Ness Monster (Cryptid Kids #1) by Natalie Riess and Sara Goetter (June 27, $14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-250-83466-9). The other kids figure Penny just imagined that she was saved from drowning by a mystical fowl-serpent, until they meet the Bawk-Ness monster themselves—and a bunch of other cryptids who need help from their new human friends. Ages 8–12.

Eerie Tales from the School of Screams by Graham Annable (July 18, $14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-250-19503-6). Annable, director of the Oscar-nominated Boxtrolls, lines up the thrills in an anthology of spooky comics such as “The Face in the Forest” and “The Village that Vanished.” Ages 8–12.

The Periodic Table of Elements: Understanding the Building Blocks of Everything by Jon Chad (Mar. 14, $12.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-250-76761-5) continues the fact-based Science Comics series with a narrative of how Mel, a big fan of the periodic table, uses her understanding of the building-block elements to fight a villain. Ages 9–13.

Snot Goblins and Other Tasteless Tales by Rob Kutner and David DeGrand (July 25, $14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-250-78080-5) gives boogers and other gross-out kid delights the center stage in tales of putrid pet carcasses and defecating bugs, among other worst things a parent can imagine. Ages 8–12.

Squire & Knight by Scott Chantler (May 9, $22.99, ISBN 978-1-250-24933-3). It’s hard managing up, as a young nerdy Squire learns. Squire’s the one who solves the puzzles to slay the monsters, but it’s bruiser knight Sir Kelton who takes the acclaim. Ages 8–12.

Travis Daventhorpe for the Win! by Wes Molebash (Mar. 21, $13.99, ISBN 978-1-250-80140-1). Travis is just trying to win the science fair when a flying robot spins him into the multiverse, where a wizard reveals a prophecy. Ages 8–12.

Graphic Universe

Another Band’s Treasure: A Story of Recycled Instruments by Hua Lin Xie (Apr. 4, $14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-72847-823-4). Based on a true story, this graphic novel shows how a teacher in a small Paraguayan village brought music to his students by recycling found objects into homemade instruments. Ages 8–12.

The Green Girls by Loïc Nicoloff et al., trans. by Percy Leed (Mar. 7, $14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-72847-822-7). The Green Girls are a crew of young women who take to social media with livestreams and protest stunts to rally attention to ecological issues like pollution from container ships or overproduction of palm oil. Ages 9–14.


Akim Aliu: Dreamer by Akim Aliu et al. (Feb. 7, $14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-338-78760-3) opens up the life of the Ukrainian Nigerian Canadian professional hockey player, from growing up in Toronto and dealing with racism, to the triumph of achieving his dreams on the ice. Ages 8–12.

Squished: A Graphic Novel by Megan Wagner Lloyd and Michelle Mee Nutter (Mar. 7, $12.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-338-56893-6). The team behind Allergic return with another family story, this one coming from a household of nine, where artistic 11-year-old Avery just wishes she could get a room of her own. Ages 8–12.


Drawn to Change the World: Graphic Novel Collection by Emma Reynolds et al. (June 20, $11.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-06-308421-6) presents an anthology of drawn stories
of youth activists coming together for ecological justice. Ages 8–12.

Ember and the Island of Lost Creatures by Jason Pamment (June 27, $15.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-06-306520-8). A miniature boy must search his way through Puzzle Island and evade a sea monster, among other dangers. Ages 8–12.

Saving Chupie by Amparo Ortiz and Ronnie Garcia (June 13, $13.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-06-295028-4). When Violeta travels to help her grandmother in Puerto Rico after a hurricane, they fix up the family restaurant and discover a friendly Chupacabra. Ages 8–12.

Shakti by SJ Sindu and Nabi H. Ali (May 2, $13.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-06-309011-8) features an Indian American girl who draws on the power of a Hindu goddess to save her loved ones and community from witchy meanies. Ages 8–12.

Unhappy Camper by Lily Lamotte and Ann Xu (May 16, $13.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-06-297389-4). Two sisters who feel very differently about their heritage spend the summer at a Taiwanese American camp—Claire’s enthusiastic as always about all thing Taiwanese, but Michelle’s still not sure. Ages 8–12.

Hippo Park

The Love Report by BéKa and Maya, trans. by Jessie Aufiery and Ivanka Hahnen-
berger (June 13, $19.99, ISBN 978-1-66264-040-7). Why do people fall in love? More particularly, why do tweens? Buddies Grace and Lola decide to tackle this question, and by observing and analyzing all the dating data in the schoolyard, they uncover unexpected results. Ages 10–14.


Ghost Book by Remy Lai (July 18, $22.99, ISBN 978-1-250-81041-0) charts the story of a ghost-human friendship between a girl who sees spirits and a boy whose soul is caught in limbo between life and death. She wants to help him return to the land of the living, but that wish comes at great cost. Ages 8–12.

Iron Circus

Occulted by Ryan Estrada, Amy Rose, and Jeongmin Lee (May 2,, $14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-63899-109-0) tells Rose’s true story of growing up in a cult in the late 1990s, and how the Heaven’s Gate tragedy led her to find freedom—which starts with risky trips to the forbidden public library. Ages 10–12.


The Curse (Orcs! #2) by Christine Larsen (Mar. 30, $16.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-68415-890-4). An Orc celebratory rager ends up in a party foul that unleashes something very old and very sinister, just as a necromancer crops up to make all kinds of trouble in the wide Known World. Age: 8–14.

Kids Can

ThunderBoom by Jack Briglio and Claudia Dávila (May 2, $16.99, ISBN 978-1-5253-0496-5). Briglio scripts a tale of a neurodivergent boy named Logan who becomes a superhero in his mind to face the fears that arise on a family trip when he briefly loses sight of his parents. Ages 9–12.


Picture Day (The Brinkley Yearbooks #1) by Sarah Sax (June 27, $13.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-593-30687-1). When Viv cuts off her trademark braid right before class pictures are taken, her social status skyrockets, and suddenly everyone wants her to livestream their makeovers—but what about the best friends she had before her new look? Ages 8–12.

Little, Brown

Buzzing by Samuel Sattin and Rye Hickman (July 18, $12.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-316-62841-9) gets into the head of a kid with OCD, who finds that the clinic his mom wants him to attend doesn’t work as well as role-playing games do to quiet the buzzing in his busy mind. Ages 8–12.

Kid Penguin (Reggie #1) by Jen de Oliveira (June 6, $7.99 paper, ISBN 978-0-7595-5756-7). Reggie’s a silly flightless bird, full of mischief and pranks, like cutting off his feathers and trying to stick them back before his mom finds out and sneaking cookie dough. Ages 8–12.


Galápagos (Scientists in the Wild #1) by Helen Scales and Rômolo D’Hipólito (March 7, $19.99, ISBN 978-1-83874-859-3) ships readers out with a team of marine biologists as they study the fauna and flora of the Galapagos Islands, climbing its coasts and volcanoes, and learning about Darwin’s theory of evolution along the way. Ages 8-12.


Missing You by Phellip Willian and Melissa Garabeli (April 11, $15.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-63715-207-2). Bereaved sisters find a deer and make it their pet, and while it helps them heal their grief, they learn that this wild thing isn’t meant to be kept from the forest. Ages 8-12

The Snowcat Prince by Dina Norlund (Mar. 7, $14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-63715-198-3). The baby of the royal family, the snowcat prince Syv, seeks the missing crown of his ancestors on a grand adventure and coming-of-age journey. Ages 8–12.


The Dying Flame (Ralph Azham #4) by Lewis Trondheim (July 25, $19.99, ISBN 978-1-5458-1032-3) concludes the Angoulême Prize–winning cartoonist’s adventures featuring the Chosen One, Ralph, and his allies (a mage and thief) in the kingdom of Astolia, as he discovers some surprises about the true nature of his nemesis Vam Syrus. Ages 12–16.

The Loud House Super Special by Loud House Creative Team (Feb. 7, $12.99, ISBN 978-1-5458-1023-1). Based on the Nickelodeon animated series, this anthology chronicles the antics of superheroes Ace Savvy, Muscle Fish, El Falcon de Fuego, and all of their super-duper friends and family. Ages 8–11

Penguin Workshop

Who Is Tibet’s Exiled Leader? The 14th Dalai Lama by Teresa Robeson and Angela Poon (Apr. 4, $12.99, ISBN 978-0-593-38460-2). The latest entry in the Who HQ Graphic Novel series offers a biography of the 14th Dalai Lama, from his origins in Tibet to his eventual exile, delving into religion and politics. Ages 8–12

Random House Graphic

Grace Needs Space! by Benjamin A. Wilgus and Rii Abrego (Apr. 4, $13.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-593-18238-3). In this sci-fi adventure, Grace is pumped to head to the moon with her mom Kendra, who she thinks will make the trip a blast (since her other mom, Evelyn, is such a dud). But when they crash-land, things don’t turn out quite as she imagined. Ages 8–12.

The Moth Keeper by K. O’Neill (Mar. 7, $13.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-593-18226-0). In a chilly desert town where lunar moths keep the community humming, a young moth keeper, Anya, longs to see the sun—risking failure of her responsibilities for a chance at warmth. Ages 8–12.

Roaring Brook

Lost in the Mountains (Survival Scout #1) by Maxwell Eaton (May 2, $19.99, ISBN 978-1-250-79046-0). Through the story of Scout, who gets lost in the mountains, readers learn survival tips and skills such as finding shelter, food, water, and ways to signal for help. Ages 8–12.


Global: One Fragile World. An Epic Fight for Survival. by Eoin Colfer, Andrew Donkin, and Giovanni Rigano (Apr. 11, $14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-72826-219-2). Colfer and the Artemis Fowl graphic novel team come together to raise awareness of climate change through the dual stories of Sami, who lives along the Indian Ocean, and Yuki, in Northern Canada. Ages 10–14.


Irena Sendler: A Graphic Novel by Margaret Littman and Sara Luna (May 23, $10.99, ISBN 978-1-5037-6578-8). The story of humanitarian and social worker Irene Sendler, who helped smuggle 2,500 Jewish children out of harm’s way in Nazi-occupied Poland during WWII, marks the newest entry in the It’s Her Story series. Ages 7 and up.

Titan Comics

Bash! by Rudy Gobert and Vince Serrano (Feb 14, $17.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-78773-988-8). In the intergalactic basketball tournament, the stakes are as high as infinite space, but one young player from an impoverished origin still hopes to rise up and compete. Ages 10–14.

Top Shelf

Contact! (Cosmic Cadets #1) by Ben Crane and Mimi Alves (Apr. 18, $14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-60309-520-4). It’s up to the son of a spaceship captain to save his father—and the rest of humanity—from a galaxy-wide war when Jimmil and his buddies get dropped on an alien planet and try to contact its inhabitants. Ages 9–12.

Skull Cat and the Curious Castle (Skull Cat #1) by Norman Shurtliff (Feb. 21, $14.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-60309-519-8). Scully’s employed in a creepy castle as the garden-keeper cat, but when everyone else there vanishes, he must summon great courage to figure out where they all went (and, more worryingly, if someone took them). Ages 9–12.

The Unpetables by Dennis Messner (June 20, $9.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-60309-523-5). Pigmund and Lizárdo break free from the petting zoo and go out on the town, hiding from maintenance man Kenny and offering up their services as animal companions as long as no customer ever pets them again. Ages 9–12.


The Last Comics on Earth by Max Brallier et al. (Apr. 25, $14.99, ISBN 978-0-593-52677-4) spins off a meta-
fictional comic book adventure from within the Last Kids on Earth series universe. After the kids determine to become superheroes in their own fan-fiction creation, they must get rid of their fave series’ original author. Ages 8–12.


Garvey’s Choice: The Graphic Novel by Nikki Grimes and Theodore Taylor III (June 6, $22.99, ISBN 978-1-66266-002-3) blends verse and comics to tell the story of Garvey. Pressured by his father to be an athlete, Garvey soothes his sense of isolation with food but gets picked on for his weight. When he joins the school chorus, he finds his true friends and self. Ages 9–12.

Early Reader Spotlight

These graphic novels are flexible and fun entry points for early elementary school comics fans who are graduating from picture books but still love a readaloud. New series launches abound following the style of popular predecessors, with plenty of variety: Dig Dog Man? Check out Marshmallow Martians. Is Princess in Black a kid’s jam? Meet futuristic female heroine Juniper Mae, Knight of Tykotech City.

Agents of S.U.I.T.

John Patrick Green, Christopher Hastings, and Pat Lewis. First Second, Feb. 21 ($10.99, ISBN 978-1-250-85256-4)

Cilantro the Chameleon from the InvestiGators gets a spin-off and some aliens to track down in this new series from Green. Ages 7–10.

The Art of Getting Noticed (Bigfoot and Nessie #1)

Chelsea M. Campbell and Laura Knetzger. Penguin Workshop, Feb. 7 ($12.99, ISBN 978-0-593-38572-2)

Besties the Loch Ness Monster and Bigfoot share their trials with avoiding and getting noticed. Ages 4–8.


Meggie Ramm. Amulet, Mar. 28 ($13.99, ISBN 978-1-4197-5657-3)

Reclusive Batcat tries to get rid of an unwelcome ice cream–thieving ghost on Spooky Island. Ages 6–9.

Caterpillars: What Will I Be When I Get to Be Me?

Kevin McCloskey. Toon, July 11 ($13.99, ISBN 978-1-662665-08-0; $7.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-662665-09-7)

McCloskey (We Dig Worms) is back to explore the life cycle of the butterfly. Ages 4–7.

Go Camping (Wombats #1)

Maddie Frost. Viking, Apr. 4 ($12.99, ISBN 978-0-593-46529-5)

Albert and Pickles go camping in Woolly Moon Beast territory, but have very different notions of roughing it. Ages 6–9.

Juniper Mae: Knight of Tykotech City

Sarah Soh. Nobrow, Mar. 7 ($12.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-912497-45-4)

A young inventor rises up like her hero knights to help citizens in her ultra-techie futuristic city. Ages 7–9.

Otis & Peanut

Naseem Hrab and Kelly Collier. OwlKids, Apr. 15 ($18.95, ISBN 978-1-77147-496-2)

Odd couple guinea pig Otis and naked mole rat Peanut work through such challenges as getting a haircut and decorating a home. Ages 6–8.

School Day Drama (Chi-Chi and Pey-Pey #1)

Jennifer Fosberry and Shiho Pate. Simon Spotlight, June 27 ($6.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-66593-188-5)

A chicken who digs snacks and a pogo-stick-enthusiast penguin become unlikely friends. Ages 4–6.

Scientists Are Saving the World! (My First Discovery Graphic Novel #1)

Saskia Gwinn and Ana Albero. Magic Cat, May 2 ($14.99, ISBN 978-1-4197-6596-4)

These capsule graphic bios introduce young readers to innovative astronauts, astrophysicists, paleontologists, zoologists, and more. Ages 6–9.

Show and Smell (Marshmallow Martians #1)

Deanna Kent and Neil Hooson. Random House Graphic, Apr. 18 ($13.99, ISBN 978-0-593-56608-4)

Goofy alien marshmallows land on Earth and gather smelly stuff to take back to their home planet. Ages 5–8.

This Is Not My Story

Ryan Uytdewilligen and David Huyck. Kids Can, June 6 ($19.99, ISBN 978-1-5253-0343-2)

Literary genres get a literal tour as a young protagonist treks through different tropes of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. Ages 6–9.

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