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I'm Kellie, an avid reader and school librarian who loves sharing and talking about books.As a middle school librarian I get to spend my days doing just that, while also enjoy discovering the perfect books to share with my friends. Ms. Burke's Books is a continuation of that, a place where I can offer my honest opinions on the books I read and hopefully help match you to your new favorite book!

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Booked: Graphic Novel by Kwame Alexander

Booked:Graphic Novel


Confident and in control on the soccer field, middle schooler Nick struggles off the field between issues with his parents and dealing with schoolwork. He rather be playing or daydreaming about soccer but instead he has his English teacher nagging him to pay attention and his linguistics professor dad making him memorize vocabulary words. But with some prodding from the librarian and his crush to join the school book club Nick may find he may not hate reading and that he has more people on his side then he thinks. An ode to both soccer and words, Kwame Alexander’s novel in verse brings authenticity to the middle school experience.

My Thoughts

The Booked:Graphic Novel takes Alexander’s original book and adds Dawud Anyabwile’s bold black and white illustrations to bring additional life to the story. With splashes of the same shade of green the graphics are simple but striking, using bold lines, different sized words, and varying layouts to convey the emotions of the language. Nick also unintentionally sprinkles the vocabulary words he’s forced to learn throughout his speech and a graphic with the word’s definition is given on the same page, tying the words into the story. 

The multifaceted characters are what really make Booked shine though. The characters are complex and given enough details to feel like real people without slowing down the pace of the book. For instance, the librarian is a former rap producer who survived a brain tumor and now runs the Nerds and Words book club at school. In a few sentences Alexander develops this interesting side character that even without the illustrations the reader can visualize clearly

Weaving an ode to words and language into a strikingly illustrated sports story, Booked:Graphic Novel will appeal to a wide range of readers who will relate to the struggles of growing up. 

Book Information

Author: Kwame Alexander
Publisher: Clarion Books
Publish Date: Published July 12, 2022

Genre(s): realistic fiction, graphic novel
Recommended for: middle school
Diversity: Main character is Black, other characters diverse.
Trigger Warnings: none

I received an ARC (advanced reader copy) of this book for free from NetGalley and Clarion Books. This is my honest review and all opinions are my own

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