I’m sure you will know children who are crazy about the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books by Jeff Kinney. Boys in particular love the funny adventures of Greg Heffley, which are a mix of text and comic-style illustrations. There are quite a few series now that are similar in style to these books, including the very popular Big Nate series by Lincoln Peirce. So far there are 8 books featuring Big Nate, including two activity books and two books of original Big Nate comic strips. The latest Big Nate book is Here Goes Nothing, and it’s chock-full of Big Nate comic strips.
In Big Nate: Here Goes Nothing, Nate and his friends get up to all sorts of mischief as usual, like pulling pranks at school, trying to make money by selling photocopies of his artwork, trying to convince his dad to get a dog, blogging about his teacher, and painting his grandparent’s house. Lincoln Peirce read a lot of Peanuts and Dennis the Menace comic strips growing up and you can see these influences in Big Nate. My favourite comic strip in the book is the one where Nate and Teddy hear the ice cream truck music, only to run outside and find out it’s the mobile library. I don’t know why no one has thought of trying that before!
If you know a kid that’s wants to read a book like Diary of a Wimpy Kid or they just like comics, the Big Nate series is perfect. Big Nate: Here Goes Nothing is available in libraries and book shops in New Zealand now.
Check out this video of Lincoln Peirce talking about Big Nate and drawing his character.