Saturday, April 01, 2017
The Knights of Boo'Gar, Reformed
Roche, Art. The Knights of Boo'Gar
April 4th 2017 by Andrews McMeel Publishing
Copy recieved from the publisher
When Princess Phlema's goat, Babycakes, is kidnapped and held for ransom, she is bound and determined to get him back. Her father, King Mewkus, puts out a call for the knights of the kingdom, but there is only one left. Rowland reluctantly agrees to set out on his ostrich, Tulip, to look for the goat, who has been stolen by King Sinius' minions in the hope that magical The Book of Loogey will be turned over to him in exchange. Rowland, armed with the Staff of Slumber, gets help from Crustos, as well as Nose Goblins he meets in a cave. Can Babycakes be found, and how will the kingdom be able to survive financially. (Hint: Selling cantaloupe is apparently more lucrative than I thought.)
Strengths: The Amp! books really appeal to my readers, mainly because the size of the font and the placement of the pictures is just right for the reluctant readers in my age group. The gross out humor doesn't hurt. I did appreciate that Princess Phlema was fairly active and didn't need to be saved; in fact, she saves the day with a robotic cantaloupe harvester!
Weaknesses: Really? Boo'Gar? Mewkus? Sigh. I am not the target demographic.
What I really think: My students will love this one!
Weinberger, Justin. Reformed.
March 28th 2017 by Scholastic Press
E ARC from Edelweiss Above the Treeline
Ian gets drawn into a prank performed by his "friend" Devon on the last day of middle school. Devon traded for Ian's peanut butter sandwich and put some in Max's food-- causing Max to go into anaphylactic shock. The boys are found out, and with two of their other friends who were involved, sent off to a camp for transgressors, since they are almost in high school. There, Ian finally realizes the depths of Devon's cruelty, and is surprised at the cruelty of some of his other friends.
Strengths: Love the cover, and the idea of bullies being reformed had its moments. I thought that Devon was the most realistic bully I've seen lately-- no swirlies, just really devious stuff.
Weaknesses: This strained credulity when they went to the camp. Just couldn't buy into it.
What I really think: Had its moments, but ultimately didn't work for me. Take a look; it may be just what you need.