Does your kid get excited about comic books? My girls fell in love with comic books at age three. Mr. Whatever Mom is a self-professed comic book “geek.” Other than the most recognizable superheroes like Superman, Wonder Woman and Spider-Man, I really don’t know much about comics. I enjoy them as an art form, but I never developed a passion for comic books like my husband’s. For him, sharing that passion with his kids is really something special.
My girls are almost five now, so we are often hunting for age appropriate (non-violent, appropriately-dressed females) comic books. Enter Little Maia. We first met Maia and her author Robert Geronimo at the New York City Comic Convention a few short weeks ago. Among all the big marketing booths and retail vendors sat Robert and his team from Ascalon Press with these amazing books about Little Maia.
Maia is a little girl who takes on big adventures. In her first adventure “Little Maia and the Coral City” she is swallowed by a large sea monster and finds Coral City, a world below the sea. Then she takes an adventure on the Lunar Express in “Little Maia and the Lunar Express” and travels through space. (Coincidentally the sea and outer space just happen to be two of our favorite topics).
Both books are so beautifully illustrated you don’t even need words to tell the story. This is perfect since these are picture books without words. Kids get to make up the dialogue and narrate the action at the turn of every page. Maia is a brave little problem solver who finds her own way home. She doesn’t have parents telling her what to do or saving her from her perils. She is all on her own. The fact that she isn’t a superhero with mysterious super powers and a secret identity makes her relatable for any kid, not just for girls.
Kids take on the role of storyteller through these books and can really become part of the adventure. It is amazing to hear my kids create inner monologue for Maia, give her the power to be brave and make up conversations between characters. They never tell the story the same way. They embellish it more and more each time.
Parents can get in on the story by asking questions that help their child delve deeper into the characters and the storyline. “How do you think Maia feels when the thunder hits?” “What do you think she is saying to those little aliens?” “What would you do if _____?” These graphic novels have become an opportunity for my kids to connect with their own ideas of bravery and at times their own emotions. It’s amazing to see how much learning is happening while reading a comic book!
As a mom I feel Maia is a wonderful portrayal of a young heroine showing that even girls take on monsters and travel through space. As a newly-minted comic fan I really enjoy the intricate details of the illustrations. The pictures give the story a flow even nonreaders can follow. These are great for preschoolers, early readers and beyond!
What comic books are your kids reading?
The Whatever Mom is a full time wife and twin mama living on coffee and wine. She enjoys the pure rush of cleaning the BIG potty between loads of laundry. It is her dream that moms everywhere accept and embrace the Whatever Mom philosophy which can be found here.