Moth & Whisper Volume 1
Published by: AfterShock
Written by: Ted Anderson
Illustrated by: Jen Hickman
“The moth was a master of disguise, but the Whisper was a master of stealth.”
The entire city knows the names of its legendary thieves: the Moth and the Whisper. What the city doesn’t know is that the two legendary thieves are missing, and their child is about to step up to play both of their roles. An open gender-queer teenager, Niki, tries to find their parents by following the clues the Moth and the Whisper left behind in a secret video.
Niki has been trained in all forms of infiltration, stealth, and disguise. From Niki’s mother, the Moth, Niki has inherited and learned the mastery of disguising their-self anywhere, any place. From Niki’s father, the Whisper, Niki has inherited and learned the mastery of being stealth.
Following their parents video clues that lead Niki from one crime boss to another, Niki finds some help from a very unlikely friend. Niki also discovers a secret safe house that Niki’s parents never mentioned, and with a secret safe house comes another new friend, or another new foe?
With the skills of both parents, and an intellectually charged ambition to do right, Niki is perhaps more powerful than the crime bosses they encounter and their two very famous parents.
Set in a cyberpunk future that paints a picture of how far social media can be used for corruption, I strongly recommend Moth & Whisper to parents, teachers, and librarians. A surprise title find for me, but a growing title in the graphic novel industry, I look forward to picking up the next volume as soon as it comes out!
Language Arts Elements of Story
Plot: The Moth and the Whisper are legendary thieves and everyone knows their names. When they go missing, however, their gender-queer teenager (Niki) finds a secret video and steps up to follow the clues. Will a young Niki be able to follow in their parents’ footsteps and find their parents?
Major Characters: The Moth, The Whisper, Walter Waverly, Derry Waverly, Macready, Chen, Haag, Armando Mazzei, Weaver, Niki, Ambrose Wolfe, Anilac Corporation, Khalil Morris, Carbon, Aada Novello, Wygans, Nia Tulles, Wolfe’s Bodyguards, the Mole
Major Settings: Art Gallery, Office Building, Seinai’s Drinks, Niki’s Safe House, Carbon’s Safe House, Waverly’s Mansion, Refuse Sorting Facility, Government District
Themes: Disguises, Family, Environmental Change and Big Business, Social Media and Facial Recognition Technology, Trust
Lesson Plan Recommendations Using the Common Core Standards for Middle and High School Readers
Key Ideas and Details:
Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text, including determining where the text leaves matters uncertain.
The number(s) referenced above corresponds to the number used by the Common Core Standards (www.corestandards.com) Lesson Idea for Middle and High School Readers
Directions for Lesson Plan
Reading Moth & Whisper: The Kid Volume 1 centers on putting textual and visual evidence together in an ongoing investigation to find Niki’s parents.
Ask students to create an outline for each of the five chapters. Underneath each chapter’s space, students need to leave room for citing three textual and three visual clues from each chapter, thus creating a document trail of the clues that they think best help Niki throughout the story. The goal is for students to identify the evidence, both textually and visually, at the same times Niki does, almost as if they are co-investigators in the story.
Students can summarize, paraphrase, or quote for textual evidence. For visual evidence, students can draw or take a picture(s) of the panel(s) / page(s) and insert it into each chapter’s visual evidence space.
After completion, and in order of the chapters, engage in a whole class discussion that allows all students to share their textual and visual evidence clues from each chapter in the story.