How did I not know this existed before? There is a series of Avatar graphic novels currently being released that cover the period after the series ended, including the infamous “what’s the deal with Zuko’s mother?” question.
Actually, I know why I didn’t know they existed. It’s because I tend to be dismissive toward book tie ins of TV shows, products, and movies. For example, it’s all very well and good that the kids love Lego Ninjago, but I think I’d die if they thought the Ninjago early readers were quality literature. Plus, Avatar doesn’t exactly have a great track record. The Avatar Lost Scrolls chapter book series, which we have seen at the library many times, has some of the worst graphic design of any book for children I’ve ever seen. The entire book is set in a difficult to read small type. I suppose that makes it lucky that it’s not really worth reading.
But take heart, because this series, called The Promise, is written by Gene Luen Yang. Yang is better known for his National Book Award winning graphic novels for young adults. And while this series probably isn’t quite on par with American Born Chinese, it is solid storytelling and quality art. Avatar fans should not be disappointed. Yang has the voices of the characters down but carries the story forward with new twists and developments. My kids were so delighted to get these that they devoured the first one immediately. There are currently two volumes available with a third one due in early October.