For this wordless picture book/graphic novel series, Owly and Wormy use symbols and expressions to tell their story. In this story, Owly and Wormy can’t wait to try out Owly’s new telescope. However, they must face all of their fears of the night: the dark, rain, and bats. Luckily, with Owly’s bravery and sense of adventure, they can make new friends and see all the stars.
One of the hardcover picture books that complement the paperback graphic novel series, this is a nice, short addition to the mix. As Owly and Wormy work to overcome the challenges that spring up during their adventure, readers use the imagery to tell the story. Not only does this build skills for eventual text reading, children also must read the facial expressions to see how the characters are feeling, which helps build social skills. With a nice flow and just a taste of scariness, Owly and Wormy find their way through the forest.
The full color, large-scale pictures are fun to see, compared to the black and white graphic novels. Owly and Wormy retain their characteristic cuteness and expressive faces, but the backgrounds have a whole new depth. There are no traditional comic book panels, but many pages contain multiple progressive images. These are broken up with some full- and double-page spreads. This makes the book even easier to understand than the regular series, much like a graphic novel with training wheels.
This is a great starter book for young readers who might not be able to sit through an entire graphic novel. The illustrations are adorable with their rich, full color. Owly and Wormy are a nice addition to any graphic novel collection, and this book fits in well for the earliest graphic novel readers.
Owly and Wormy: Bright Lights and Starry Nights
by Andy Runton
Simon & Schuster, 2013