5 Questions with Ben Hatke


(previous interviews in this series can be found here.)

Welcome to another installment of 5 Questions with a 5-Year-Old. Today, Zoey chats with Ben Hatke: artist, author, and creator of the Zita the Spacegirl graphic novels.

From page 1 of Zita the Spacegirl, Zoey was hooked. It’s got all the makings of a classic in this house: strong and spunky female protagonist, funky-looking aliens and creatures, amazing art, and an engaging adventure story. It’s basically everything Zoey loves all packaged together into one book.

Two subsequent books–Legends of Zita the Spacegirl and The Return of Zita the Spacegirl–round out the trilogy, and all three are published by the simply stellar First Second Books.


If you have a young reader, you cannot go wrong with these books. Notice that I didn’t say “young comics reader.” These books are superb for all kids, whether they’re into comics/graphic novels or not.

If you’ve got a fan of Bone, Amulet, Harry Potter, or Artemis Fowl, you’ve got a fan of Zita.

Zita, Amulet, and Cleopatra in Space are all among Zoey’s absolute favorites right now, and I don’t think it’s a coincidence that all three feature strong, young female leads. They’re unfortunately still a relative rarity in graphic novels today, but these three series are all tremendous.

Ben Hatke also recently released his first picture book (also from First Second), Julia’s House for Lost Creatures. Again: spunky female lead and plenty of crazy creatures. It’s guaranteed to win your heart. Just look at the cover.

Julias House for Lost Creatures


As always, all questions are Zoey’s. I simply prompt her with “clue words” so she can remember. (Make sure you turn on subtitles if you can’t make out Zoey’s questions.)

Thanks so much to Ben Hatke for taking the time to chat with Zoey!

Jamie is a publishing/book nerd who makes a living by wrangling words together into some sense of coherence. He's the founder and owner of The Roarbots and also a contributor to Syfy Wire, StarWars.com, and GeekDad. On top of that, he hosts The Great Big Beautiful Podcast, which celebrates creativity in popular culture, science, and technology by talking to a wide variety of people who contribute to it.