(9th grade & up) When it comes to books that take place in high school, one is often faced with two distinct story types: you either get the idealized, everybody is friends and graduation is the great happily ever after, or you get the gritty realism where all the cliques are at war and people genuinely hate each other, pick on each other and do their best to humiliate each other… like people so often do. Every now and then, however, you get a book that falls between these two poles. Faith Erin Hicks’ webcomic-to-printed-piece Friends with Boys (First Second Books) is one of those kind of books. It’s a story that recognizes the bitter truth of high school: that people generally don’t get along and that there is a very real hierarchy in which everyone has their place. But it is also somewhat Continue reading
Guinea PI: Hamster and Cheese by Colleen AF Venable; illustrated by Stephanie Yue
New books! One of the best parts about being a librarian is getting that brand-spanking new budget all ready to go and finally ordering those new books you’ve been salivating over for the past few months. Then, when the day arrives and you see that big brown box full of wonderful new stories… it’s like Christmas, but better- there are no awkward gifts to sort through, you got everything you asked for this time. For me, a brand new box of graphic novels is especially exciting because I know that every single one of them is going to circulate, and circulate a lot. And since kids comics just seem to be getting better and better these days, they’re helping to create a new generation of readers brought up on quality material who can’t help but fall in love with reading because of the sheer joy they get from it.
Anyway, enough heavy stuff… on to the review. One of the first titles to pop out of the box when I opened it up was Colleen AF Venable’s Guinea PI: Hamster and Cheese. This one is the first in a series (no worries, I ordered all four that are currently in existence), and from what I can tell, we’re off to a good, humorous start. Continue reading