The Silver Six
Library Bound | Paperback | Kindle Edition
Written by A.J. Lieberman
Illustrated by Darren Rawlings
Release Date: June 25, 2013
Paperback Cover Price: $10.99
Reading a graphic novel that’s geared for the 8-12 crowd can be a bit of a chore. My point is that I have an entirely different outlook on life than your average ten year old. Though my wife might argue that statement given the chance. And while I try to read most everything that my youngest child picks up, I’m usually forcing myself to get through it. Not so with The Silver Six. This comic from Scholastic is everything you want your children to read.
Centered around a young orphan named Phoebe, we watch as her world is turned upside down after being placed into the child welfare system with innumerable others. Banding together with five other children who are also tired of it all, they attempt an escape. Retreating to an isolated moon that they all coincidentally share ownership in, our mini-heroes find themselves the target of corporate greed. Between attempts on their life and the threat of the orphanage again, these six brave kids are in for the fight of their lives. Not to mention that the future of the world is at stake, too.
I don’t want to ruin anything but there are some ridiculously funny parts to this book. The best character nod has to go to Max, Phoebe’s robot companion. His dead pan humor is a large part of the success of the story. Not that the Silver Six themselves are not integral to the story, quite the opposite. But the flashes of comedy from the sentient machine really add so much to the entertainment found in this graphic novel.
Below the surface of the book, though, are some serious life lessons for kids. Independence, perseverance, and integrity are all well represented. Self reliance, though, is the biggest underlying feeling here. Showing young ones that they can achieve anything to which they set their minds is an important factor to the plot. And one that is lacking in a lot of kids books today, if I say so myself.
A.J. Lieberman, author of this story, has worked in the industry for quite some time. He’s worked at MTV, DC Comics and is co-creator of an ongoing series from Image Comics. Taking all this into account it’s not surprising that he delivers a great story that speaks to children of all ages (even those of us that are 43). Partnering with A.J. is Darren Rawlings, a well known designer, animator, and illustrator. Having worked for Trainingscape and Big Studios, as well as having clients like ESPN, NBC, MLB, and HBO, Darren brings a wide range of skills to the table that you can’t get just anywhere. These two guys do a stellar job of bringing this story to life. Ask my daughter, she read it after I did and loved it. I actually had to sneak in her room and take the book back so I could write it up.
If you have a preteen in the family, this book is a great buy. It doesn’t treat the reader like a child,though it stretches the vocabulary of some younger readers, that’s okay. It has everything needed to make the perfect story. Adventure, friendship, loss, love and suspense. It’s easy to consume, since the story and art play well together with neither overshadowing the other. Buy it, borrow it, do what you must to get this in their hands and I promise you that any young adult who likes comics will be thrilled to have it. And with that bold statement, I leave it to you to decide.