Top Texts for January

This month’s Top Texts are focused on Graphic Novels and are chosen by Richard Ruddick, a Year 6 teacher at Moorlands Primary Academy in Norfolk.


After the death of their father, Emily and Navin move house to start afresh. However, their mother disappears into a mysterious new world and they have no choice but to set off on a dangerous adventure to try and save her before it’s too late. Kazu Kibuishi’s thrilling graphic novel is perfect for readers in Year 4 and above. The action-packed story and variety of characters means readers get lost in the story and are left desperate to know what happens next!

Roller Girl

Astrid and Nicole have always done everything together until one summer they sign up for different camps. Astrid then has to deal with the struggles of losing her best friend, preparing for high school and developing her roller skating skills. Victoria Jamieson has created a wonderful tale that depicts all of the common difficulties children go through as they prepare for the transition to high school. This is perfect for children in Years 5 and 6 who are starting to prepare for this emotional and testing journey. Themes of friendship, resilience, aspirations and self-belief are all covered in a way that will leave readers always eager to find out what Astrid will do next.

El Deafo

El Deafo sees Cece Bell recount the significant events of her childhood as she dealt with the struggles of hearing loss at such a young age. She explores the difficulties she had fitting in and making friends which helps to create a powerful tale that explores the importance of being who you want to be. The story is full of illustrations that not only complement the story being told but also add to the impact of the words. Throughout the book a range of important messages and themes are explored in a manner that readers can easily relate to. This helps to create a story that is not only engaging but will help readers to deal with future social and emotional issues whether they have an impairment or not.


About this month's reviewer

Richard Ruddick is a Year 6 teacher at Moorlands CofE Primary Academy in Norfolk. He also runs a blog about using comic books and graphic novels in the classroom which can be accessed at and can also be followed on Twitter @RuddickRichard.