The graphic novel shelves have recently exploded with adaptations of long-time favorite chapter book series like The Baby-sitter’s Club, I Survived, My Weird School, Animorphs, and the Bailey School Kids.
Now graphic novel readers can delve into the worlds of the Greek gods and goddesses as two more series have gotten a graphic novel makeover.
Heroes in Training and Goddess Girls draw on the ancient Greek lore, but do not confine themselves to the original tales and characterizations. Both series are filled with humor, making them quite an enjoyable read. The plot moves through the panels quite well, and do not get bogged down.
In Heroes in Training, the ancient Greek gods and goddess are young and first establishing their powers. The series opener, Zeus and the Thunderbolt of Doom, has Zeus coming across a magical sentient thunderbolt (readers will note the art depicts a bolt of lightning). In the sequel, Poseidon and the Sea of Fury, sees a young Poseidon petrified of traveling across the sea- a concept quite humorous for those aware that Poseidon becomes the god of the sea and water!
In Goddess Girls, school’s is session at the Mount Olympus Academy. The series opener, Athena the Brain, has Athena receiving a “summons” to attend the school with other goddesses and heroes. Making friends, meeting a newly discovered dad (who happens to be the principal), and coping with a school bully, has Athena starting off the school year with a bang. In the sequel, Persephone the Phony, Persephone has difficulties sticking up for what she wants. When she develops a crush on the unpopular Hades, will Persephone step out of her comfort zone and go against her friends and family?
These adaptations follow the plot of the original chapter books pretty closely, so those that have read their chapter book counterparts will find no surprises plot-wise. However, the art in both series is well done and quite inviting to read. In fact, the art serves well refresh these stories that it widens the age of the audience. These graphic novels are recommended for mid to upper elementary school readers.