Plenty to entertain in each storyline; will keep readers absorbed.

POWER OF FLIGHT

A PICK-YOUR-PATH ADVENTURE

From the Super You! series , Vol. 1

This multistranded adventure provides many possible endings to the story.

Readers are put in the role of the protagonist, addressed directly by the omniscient narrator as “you”: At summer camp, you take a trip to the Center for Avian Science, where you are scratched by a large, fierce bird, events depicted in dynamic black-and-white comic panels. Afterward, you discover you can fly, and you are presented with your first choice: Do you tell the camp nurse about your new abilities, or do you mislead her? From there, it’s a mad dash through various scenarios. Many of them involve scenes with the nefarious Dr. Zeus. Will your encounters with him tempt you to behave badly or inspire you to do good? Some choices lead to death, including by goop. Others lead to a mediocre existence after losing your superpower. And then there’s Hector, the big bird who scratched you: Do you free him? Only one path leads to greatness, while another leads to villainy. The number of options is rather dizzying, and readers will spend hours exploring the possibilities, most of which present moral dilemmas. There’s lots of excitement for readers as they race to find the correct page to finish the version they’ve started, wherever that may lead. Black-and-white illustrations depict characters who appear White; names signal some ethnic diversity in the cast.

Plenty to entertain in each storyline; will keep readers absorbed. (Adventure. 8-12)

Pub Date: May 3, 2022

ISBN: 978-0-593-22485-4

Page Count: 272

Publisher: Penguin Workshop

Review Posted Online: March 16, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2022

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A sympathetic, compelling introduction to wolves from the perspective of one wolf and his memorable journey.

A WOLF CALLED WANDER

Separated from his pack, Swift, a young wolf, embarks on a perilous search for a new home.

Swift’s mother impresses on him early that his “pack belongs to the mountains and the mountains belong to the pack.” His father teaches him to hunt elk, avoid skunks and porcupines, revere the life that gives them life, and “carry on” when their pack is devastated in an attack by enemy wolves. Alone and grieving, Swift reluctantly leaves his mountain home. Crossing into unfamiliar territory, he’s injured and nearly dies, but the need to run, hunt, and live drives him on. Following a routine of “walk-trot-eat-rest,” Swift traverses prairies, canyons, and deserts, encountering men with rifles, hunger, thirst, highways, wild horses, a cougar, and a forest fire. Never imagining the “world could be so big or that I could be so alone in it,” Swift renames himself Wander as he reaches new mountains and finds a new home. Rife with details of the myriad scents, sounds, tastes, touches, and sights in Swift/Wander’s primal existence, the immediacy of his intimate, first-person, present-tense narration proves deeply moving, especially his longing for companionship. Realistic black-and-white illustrations trace key events in this unique survival story, and extensive backmatter fills in further factual information about wolves and their habitat.

A sympathetic, compelling introduction to wolves from the perspective of one wolf and his memorable journey. (additional resources, map) (Fiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: May 7, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-06-289593-6

Page Count: 240

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Review Posted Online: Feb. 6, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2019

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Classic action-packed, monster-fighting fun

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THE LAST KIDS ON EARTH

From the Last Kids on Earth series , Vol. 1

It’s been 42 days since the Monster Apocalypse began, and 13-year-old Jack Sullivan, a self-proclaimed “zombie-fighting, monster-slaying tornado of cool” is on a quest to find and rescue his not-so-secret crush, June Del Toro, whether she needs it, wants it, or not.

Jack cobbles together an unlikely but endearing crew, including his scientist best friend, Quint Baker; Dirk Savage, Parker Middle School’s biggest bully; and a pet monster named Rover, to help him save the damsel in distress and complete the “ULTIMATE Feat of Apocalyptic Success.” Middle-grade readers, particularly boys, will find Jack’s pitch-perfect mix of humor, bravado, and self-professed geekiness impossible to resist. His sidekicks are equally entertaining, and it doesn’t hurt that there are also plenty of oozing, drooling, sharp-toothed monsters and zombies and a host of gizmos and gadgets to hook readers and keep them cheering with every turn of the page. Holgate’s illustrations play an integral role in the novel’s success. They not only bring Brallier’s characters to life, but also add depth and detail to the story, making plain just exactly how big Rover is and giving the lie to Jack’s “killer driving.” The marriage of text and illustration serves as a perfect example of what an illustrated novel can and should be.

Classic action-packed, monster-fighting fun (. (Graphic/horror hybrid. 8-12)

Pub Date: Oct. 13, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-670-01661-7

Page Count: 240

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: July 22, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2015

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