13 Graphic Novel Adaptations of Classic Books for Tweens & Teens

Encourage your child to get to know a classic novel from your own childhood with these awesome graphic novel adaptations of classic books for tweens and teens.

But why read the graphic novel version of a classic?

Why not just jump straight in to the classic itself? I have tried but for some reason many of the classics from my own childhood just don’t capture the interest of my book-loving pre-teen. You cannot even imagine my utter devastation when she first turned down Anne of Green Gables!

So reading a graphic novel adaptation can be one (albeit sneaky) way to introduce those reluctant to read a classic novel with the story, hopefully piquing their interest enough to go back to retry the original.

The visual support to storytelling that a graphic novel adaptation provides can also be invaluable to comprehension for a struggling reader – at any age. Add to this, the current popularity of graphic novels and parents, teachers and librarians have a wonderful opportunity to extend the current reading list of their students to include more classic literature – in a super engaging format.

Finally, a graphic novel can provide a new perspective on a book the reader has previously enjoyed, as each adaptation emphasises subtle differences in meaning or the significance of various elements of the story. Just like book to movie adaptations, a graphic novel versus classic novel comparison can provide fodder for many an interesting debate!

Whatever your reason for reading, these graphic novel adaptations of classics are well worth a look.

Graphic Novel Adaptations of Classic Novels for Tweens and Teens

Graphic Novel Adaptations of Classic Books for Tweens & Teens

Each book included on classic graphic novels list is linked to both an Amazon and/or Book Depository online store page – these are affiliate links and I may earn a small commission from qualifying purchases at no extra cost to you.

Alice in Wonderland. Adapted by Russell Punter Alice in Wonderland graphic novel adaptation
A charming retelling of classic Carroll, as Alice follows the White Rabbit down the rabbit hole into a world of delightfully eccentric characters. The detailed illustrations in this adaptation are lovely, and the pace of the story moves quickly to engage younger tweens. Age 9+ years.
Available: Amazon | The Book Depository
The Witches. Illustrated by Penelope Bagieu The Witches Graphic Novel
Witches are real and very, very dangerous! They wear ordinary clothes and live in ordinary towns and there’s nothing they despise more than children! When an 8 year old boy and his grandmother come upon the Grand High Witch herself, they may be the only ones who can stop the witches’ plot to get rid of every last child in the country! Age 9+ years.
Available: Amazon | The Book Depository
Anne of Green Gables. Adapted by Mariah Marsden Anne of Green Gables
Fall in love with Anne all over again with this wonderful adaptation of the story of the orphan Anne with an e when she is sent to live with Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert. The Cuthberts had requested a boy to assist with their farm and could never have imagined the impact this spirited, passionate red headed girl would have on their lives, and the lives of those she meets in Avonlea. Age 9+ years.
Available: Amazon | The Book Depository
The Golden Compass. Adapted by Stephanie Melchior The Golden Compass
Lyra is a young girl in a world where everyone is born with a personal daemon. An orphan, she lives at Jordan College, until her Uncle Asriel returns from the North with a startling discovery that is connected to the rash of disappearances of a series of children. Lyra and her daemon, Pan, set out on a dangerous adventure to save their friends and fulfill Lyra’s destiny. Age 10+ years.
Available: Amazon | The Book Depository
A Wrinkle in Time. Adapted by Hope Larson A Wrinkle in Time graphic novel
First published in 1962, this classic science fiction story follows three children as they travel through space and time to rescue the scientist father of the lead character, Meg. Larson has successfully captured the essence of the original in her graphic novel adaptation. Age 10+ years.
Available: Amazon | The Book Depository
Love the book, see the movie! Check out our list of 50 Tween & Teen Books Made Into Movies.

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Anne Frank’s Diary: The Graphic Adaptation by Ari Folman Anne Frank's Diary Graphic Novel
This graphic novel adaptation takes parts of Anne Frank’s original diary and further illuminates the difficultly of the grave situation she and her family experienced, with clever insight into their daily lives and Anne’s personal thoughts and emotional struggles. Age 11+ years.
Available: Amazon | The Book Depository
The Giver. Adapted by P. Craig Russell The Giver Graphic Novel
A faithful adaptation of a wonderful classic. 12 year old Jonas lives in a seemingly ideal world. A world of conformity and contentment. When Jonas receives the assignment as the Receiver of Memory for the community, he begins to understand the darkness that lies behind their idyllic world. Age 12+ years.
Available: Amazon | The Book Depository
The Hobbit. Adapted by Charles Dixon The Hobbit graphic novel
When a band of dwarves embark upon a dangerous quest to reclaim the gold stolen from them by the evil dragon, Gandalf the wizard suggests an unlikely accomplice – an unassuming Hobbit named Bilbo Baggins. Together they face multiple threats and dangers and Bilbo learns of his own unexpected qualities of courage and cunning, and a love of adventure. Age 12+ years.
Available: Amazon | The Book Depository
For even more action packed graphic novels, check out our list of 15 Adventure Graphic Novels for Kids.
To Kill a Mockingbird. Adapted by Fred Fordham To Kill a Mockingbird
Fordham has done a wonderful job of recreating this beloved classic as a graphic novel. With the innocence of childhood, Scout and Jem Finch are learning to navigate their small town in the deep South in the 1930’s. It’s a place divided by race and class and through the guidance of their wise, kind father the Finch children learn important lessons about right and wrong. Age 12+ years.
Available: Amazon | The Book Depository

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Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy: A Modern Retelling of Little Women by Bre Indigo and Rey Terciero Meg Jo Beth and Amy
What can you count on in this world if not your sister? The classic story of sisters has been recreated with more than a little modern day twist -including a parent’s military deployment, a multiracial blended family, chemotherapy, coming out as gay, cell phones, email and more, alongside themes of poverty, bullying, disability and family. Age 12+ years
Available: Amazon  |  The Book Depository
Animal Farm. Adapted by Odyr  Animal Farm graphic novel adaptation
The meaning and intention George Orwell’s fable about farm animals who rise up against their rich farmer in search of equality, is enhanced wonderfully by Brazilian artist Odyr’s stunning illustrations. This fabulous retelling is sure to engage reluctant readers.  Age 13+ years.
Available: Amazon | The Book Depository
Romeo and Juliet by Gareth Hinds Romeo and Juliet graphic novel adaptation
Hind’s clear illustrations bring Shakespeare’s story of forbidden love to life without compromising the original prose, taking readers one step closer to seeing the play actually acted out on stage. Age 13+ years.
Available: Amazon | The Book Depository
The Great Gatsby. Adapted by Fred Fordham The Great Gatsby graphic novel
This retelling of The Great Gatsby brings the time period and the characters of Gatsby’s classic world to life. Staying true to the spirit of the original novel, the illustrations capture the mood of Long Island in the 1920s. It’s the story of the mysterious and wealthy Jay Gatsby and his tragic love for the beautiful Daisy Buchanan. Age 14+ years.
Available: Amazon | The Book Depository

For more great graphic novels for kids, check out the great big list in our post, Best Graphic Novels for Kids. Or browse our collection of the latest graphic novels for pre-teens in our feature, 20 Best New Graphic Novels for Tweens, all published in 2020.

Be sure to also check out our best chapter book recommendations for tweens and teens…

The Best Chapter Books for Kids Aged 6-12