Pokemon Adventures : A Librarian’s Perspective Review

I read Pokemon Adventures, book 1 at my 11-year old son’s urging. He loves Pokemon and like many his age, is pretty obsessed with it. I’m just happy he’s reading something at this point. He was a great reader up to about 3rd grade, then it seemed to have dropped off considerably. He’s now a 6th grader, and my reading Pokemon Adventures was a great bonding experience for both of us.

AUTHOR: Hidenori Kusaka
SERIES: Pokemon Adventures, book 1
PUBLISHER: Perfect Square
PUBLICATION DATE: June 2, 2009 (orig. Aug 8, 1997)
ISBN: 9781421530543
PAGES: 200
SOURCE: my son’s room
GENRE: manga
SETTING: Kanto Region, modern day
GIVE IT TO: manga fans


Ash Ketchum, a.k.a. “Red,” wants to find Pokemon and befriend them.


Some facts to know before I review this book:

  1. I am 40 years old, a child of the 1980s. Pokemon came out in the 1990s, so I don’t have a nostalgic background for this series.
  2. My 11-year old son is obsessed with Pokemon. We have a “Pokemon of the Week” at my house. He wants me to do a Pokemon club at school. He draws Pokemon. He knows all 712 Pokemon and makes up Pokemon-themed games for my 9-year old son (who likes Pokemon, but isn’t obsessed).
  3. My son was so excited that I was reading Pokemon. He kept asking me if I was enjoying it and wanting to talk about it with me. My decision to read future Pokemon books will be based on this fact alone.

Okay, so the book. Without any background into the Pokemon series, I felt pretty lost. I think I may have started at the wrong point in the series. This is Pokemon Adventures, and it seems like I should have started with regular Pokemon first. I had to ask my son a lot of questions (he loved that!), and I felt like there was a lot of background information I needed before reading this one.

I also had to get used to reading backward. Though this is Graphic Novel Challenge book #8 for me, it is my first manga book. Manga is read from back to front and from right to left. I enjoyed trying that format for the first time!

While my first foray into Pokemon left me feeling lost, I think every library (including mine) must have Pokemon books. The Pokemon themselves are pretty cute, and it’s packed with plenty of action. I can see why my son would love this.

THE BOTTOM LINE: I do not have enough Pokemon background to judge this series based on this one book. Parents, do you want to bond with your Pokemon-obsessed child? Read or watch it with them.

STATUS IN MY LIBRARY: On order. I’m expecting to have to defend this purchasing decision though.

READALIKES: Try Legend of Zelda, Naruto, Bleach, and Dragonball Z. All huge hits in my libraries, no matter what country I’m librarianing in.


I can’t really rate this the way I normally do. I didn’t really get it. I’m going to try watching some Netflix Pokemon with my boys to see if that helps.


Librarians concerned about mature content in Pokemon Adventures – at least this first volume – have nothing to worry about.

  • Language: none
  • Sexuality: none
  • Violence: mild-medium–lots of fantasy fighting
  • Drugs/Alcohol: none


This article describes five reasons to include Pokemon in the school library.

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