The Library Chronicles: Probably the best graphic novel library in any (Primary) school?

Published On February 26, 2011 | By Richard Bruton | Comics, The Library Chronicles

When I’m not writing and reviewing here at the FPI Blog, I’m the ICT Technician and a teaching assistant at a lovely Primary school here in Yorkshire. Recently my role has rather diversified into Librarian as well. And part of the new library refit and restock has been a push to get a graphic novel library into the school library.

I wrote about it here, here and here already.

Well, it’s all finished. The library is ready to go, the shelves are full of new books, everything is organised and catalogued, labelled and sorted. It looks, if I do say so myself, absolutely great.

But best of all is this:

Oh yes. Three whole bookcases of graphic novels. Just to give you an idea of the scale of the library – our entire Non-Fiction section is 5 bookcases and our entire Fiction prose section is 6 bookcases. So I think 3 bookcases solely devoted to Graphic Novels and comics is pretty good going.

But – is it the best Primary School Graphic Novel Library? Is it perhaps the best School Graphic Novel Library? Personally I don’t know, although I’d guess that it’s strongly in the running for the title. However, a lot of our readers will either visit school libraries for comic and book workshops or as parents themselves. What have you seen in your local school library?

And once again at this point I have to say a HUGE thank-you to every single person or company that donated books to the library. Without these people, it would be much, much smaller than it is….. Thank You to…….

But it doesn’t really end there. We’ve also got a lovely Picture Book section in the library now. I’d always planned on getting a few picture books that tied into comics in some way, but my budget was such that it was really only going to be the Gaiman/McKean books, Sarah McIntyre’s Morris The Mankiest Monster (which you can see poking out below) and a few others. But again, thanks to an extremely generous donation from The Publishers Group UK we’ve managed so much more:

So there you have it. The Graphic Novel Library is complete. But that doesn’t mean my work with it is done. Certainly not.

In fact it’s barely started. Next comes the work of getting the children comic literate, finding out what they enjoy, what they want more of, what they borrow most. I have visions of comic clubs, maybe a comic making group – producing their own mini-comics. Then there’s getting comic artists in for courses and workshops – on which front I do have some news but I have to sort out permissions before I can post up some photos here.

And from there who knows? I’d love to think that in a few years time it will be so embedded into their world that we’ll be having a school comic stall at Thought Bubble (our local convention).

But all that’s for the future. Right now it’s the last day of half term and it’s back to school on Monday, first job is to teach the staff something about these weird comic things they’ve noticed in the library.

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About The Author

Richard Bruton
- Started in comics retail aged 16 at Nostalgia & Comics, Birmingham. Now located in Yorkshire, he's written for the Forbidden Planet International Blog since 2007. Specialising in UK Comics and All-Ages comics, Richard's day job in a primary school allowed him to build the best children's graphic novel library in the country.

2 Responses to The Library Chronicles: Probably the best graphic novel library in any (Primary) school?

  1. Adam Cadwell says:

    These photos fill me with joy. Those are some lucky kids with books and books of inspiration just sat there waiting for them. To be honest, I’m a bit jealous.

  2. John says:

    Nice display, Richard; shame to let the kids at it. (A couple of ‘after’ pics would be interesting.)