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Review: ‘Animorphs Graphix #1: The Invasion’

In the early days of my work as a librarian, the Animorphs series took up a shelf, maybe more, in the library. It was wildly popular, even if I never got into it. With the success of Scholastic’s adaptation of The Babysitters Club, it is no surprise that publishers looked for other series to bring in a new generation of readers.

Animorphs book cover

Animorphs Graphix #1: The Invasion
By K.A. Applegate and Michael Grant, adapted by Chris Grine
Scholastic Graphix, October 6, 2020
Ages 8-12

When Jake and his friends, Rachel, Cassie, Tobias, and Marco cut through a construction site one evening, they see a strange light that changes their life forever. An alien spaceship lands and a wounded alien, an Andalite, emerges, warning the youngsters of the impending invasion of the Yerks, parasite-like aliens who take over other lifeforms and control their minds. He gives the youngsters the ability to morph, to change into any species, a power the Yerks don’t possess.

When Jake realizes his brother and their principal have been possessed by Yerks, he knows they must try to save their town. And so, the group tries to become comfortable with their power and use their abilities to save those they love.

Since I never really read the original series, I can’t compare it to the graphic novels, but this was a wonderful start to a series that will be a surefire hit. The action in the illustrations and the bold, vivid color jump off the page. The characterization is well developed and sympathetic, so readers will care enough to find out what else happens.

While this series will appeal to all sorts of readers, adults looking to entice reluctant readers, especially boys, will want to keep this book handy.

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Esther Keller About Esther Keller

Esther Keller is the librarian at JHS 278, Marine Park in Brooklyn, NY. There she started the library's first graphic novel collection and strongly advocated for using comics in the classroom. Her collection is also the model for all middle school libraries in NYC. She started her career at the Brooklyn Public Library, and later jumped ship to the school system so she could have summer vacation and a job that would align with a growing family's schedule. On the side, she is a mother of 4 and regularly reviews for SLJ and School Library Connection (formerly LMC). In her past life, she served on the Great Graphic Novels for Teens Committee where she solidified her love and dedication to comics.

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