Sunday, March 16, 2008

Jay Hosler. CLAN APIS

In preparation for our new graphic novel collection, I’ve been previewing mangas, comics, and other graphic novels. This one stood out as a winner for such a wide audience. It’s about a clan of bees, called Clan Apis (Apis is bee in Latin). Nyuki is a baby still in the larvae stage when the story begins. An older bee befriends him and explains how things are and what he should expect at the next stage of his life. The story goes on to each fascinating stage in a bee’s life. This may sound dry, by the characters are quite lively. I laughed out loud several times. Who knew learning about bees could be so much fun? I sure didn’t. I also got a whole new appreciation for bees. The way they do everything for “the hive,” rather than themselves, is pretty cool. In fact, they even die when they sting something while protecting the hive. How noble. This was written by a biology professor who has been working with bees for years. He adds an additional mini-comic at the end where he tells the story of how he found out he was allergic to bee venom after getting stung. I highly recommend this one! You’ll enjoy it so much that you won’t realize how much you’re learning.

The author is an intriguing combination of Biologist & Cartoonist. You can even see some of his comics on his website here: