My kids love graphic novels. My youngest, especially is always seeking out new, funny graphic novel series at the library. When he finds a new series I do a secret happy dance, because I know when we get home he will spend the next several hours in his room, giggling. While I have never been able to completely adapt my reading style to the comic book format, I've taken a peek at the books he brings home in order to curate this list of funny comics just for you. Rest assured, these titles have all been given the kid-approved stamp for hilarity.
(Note: book covers and titles are affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.)
These funny graphic novel series are also just the thing for your "reluctant reader," or for young readers who may feel daunted by large swaths of text, whether because of a learning challenge, or lack of interest. And don't let the graphic novel and comic book naysayers sway you–reading graphic novels counts as reading, not cheating!
Peter & Ernesto: A Tale of Two Sloths by Graham Annable. This beginning graphic novel is pretty adorable. Peter and Ernesto are opposites. Peter loves the slow life, hanging out at home. Ernesto dreams of adventure. Ernest leaves to search out adventure but the separation only brings them closer together. Utterly charming!
Dog Man by Dav Pilkey. When a cop and his canine are injured, they undergo surgery but the only way to save them is to create Dog Man! This part-canine, part-human creation feels the push and pull of his instincts from both his natures. Pilkey has said many times that he writes books that fulfill kids' need for silly books - the same need he felt as a second grader. Well, there is not doubt that this book is silly, and little doubt that kids will love it. Enjoy!
Lucy & Andy Neanderthal by Jeffery Brown. My ten year old has been reading this series out loud to me. Written by author of the Jedi Academy graphic novel series, these books tell the tale of two cave-kids, Lucy and Andy. Lots of sibling humor with loads of fun facts about Neanderthals and life in the Stone Age.
Lunch Lady by Jarrett J. Krosoczka. How would you like to have a school lunch lady who is also a sleuth and a superheroine? What if she also had super-gadget kitchen tools like a spatu-copter, perfect for battling cyborgs with fish-stick nunchucks ?Sounds pretty awesome, yes? I bet it also sounds quite hilarious and full of surprises. You are right!
Comics Squad by Jennifer A. Holm, etc.al. Not quite a graphic novel, more of a "short comic story collection", each edition of Comics Squad contains several hilarious comics by well-respected authors and illustrators. I like that young readers will experience a variety of story-telling and illustrative styles. Kids will want to search out more works by the individual authors after reading the whole series!
CatStronauts by Drew Brockington. Cuddly cats in outer space? You know that is bound to be funny. In this series opener a team of cats head to the moon to set up a solar plant. I love that Brockington weaves in some science lessons, too!
Bone by Jeff Smith. People in the know consider this one of the best graphic novel series out there. I'm definitely not an expert, but both my boys sure do like this epic series! The Bone cousins, Fone Bone, Phoney Bone, and Smiley Bone are run out of Boneville. Their high adventures begin with a separation, a reunion and loads of fantastical creatures. There are at least 9 books in the main series, plus some prequels and special and a spin-off. Best for ages 9 and up.
Pearls Before Swine Kids by Stephan Pastis. (Pastis also has a grown-up comic series under the Pearls Before Swine moniker, so be sure to get these comics from the kids' section.) My youngest son adores this funny comic strip book series so much! The main characters are all animals: a pig, crocodile, zebra, rat, etc. The humor is a little dark (but appropriate) and there are lots of lovely puns.
BONUS graphic novel I wish was a series:
The Big Bad Fox by Benjamin Renner. Sadly, this is not a series, but this funny graphic novel kept my son in stitches and so I cannot help but include it. We actually saw the French animation movie before realizing it was based on a book. A hapless fox ends up becoming a mama to some baby chicks that he originally stole in order to raise them up to be his dinner!
More of the best and funniest graphic novels and comics for kids:
- Graphic novels for beginning readers (K-3)
- Graphic novels for 3-5th grades
- Graphic novels 4-8th grade