Saturday, November 26, 2022

Friends Fur-ever

Tropper, Jana, Kote, Genevieve (illus.) and Lenoir, Axelle (illus.)
Animal Rescue Friends: Friends Fur-ever (#2)
November 8, 2022 by Andrews McMeel Publishing
E ARC provided by Edelweiss Plus

After their adventures in Animal Rescue Friends, Maddie and Bell start a new school year, and Bell really wants to join lots of clubs so that she can get into a good college. Sadly, Maddie is late because her dog Paxton ran off after a squirrel, and all of the blus are filled up. They eventually get a animal club at school, with Mrs. Wen as their advisor, since no one wanted to join her language arts club. New member Jimmy is with Maddie when they find and rescue a porcupine by cleverly luring it into a backpack, and the group spends time volunteering at the Oakville Gardens Assisted Living Facility. They even bring a rabbit in to visit Mrs. Fan, whose memory is failing, and who turns out to be Mrs. Wen's grandmother. Mrs. Wen is a little more enthusiastic about the group after this. They also try to put together a float for a parade even though the art club has sabotaged everyone's plans, and while they don't build a float, just marching as a group gets them a lot of donations for ARF. They also work on training Pendelton, a cat, to be a service animal, but don't have much luck with that. Luckily, he is adopted by a little boy who just needs a pet. 
Strengths: This had a more realistic look at school clubs, and I liked that it combined the pets with the senior facility. There are more than jsut cats and dogs portrayed, which is a little unusual for books dealing with rescue pets. Everyone works well together, with the exception of the evil art club, and the stories are upbeat and constructive. The artwork is clear and supports the text. 
Weaknesses: Because the chapters are small, comic book style vignettes, there's not much of a plot arc or character development. Jimmy was an interesting new addition, but after the porcupine episode, we don't see much of him. Younger readers will not care about this at all and will just enjoy the stories. 
What I really think: This has a good amount of words and a lower reading level for readers who might struggle with some of the more word heavy graphic novels. EPIC! does a great job with this kind of easier reader by making them more appealing, with brightly colored illustrations and shorter, easier to understand stories. I often get the feeling that my students don't actually READ graphic novels (if you bring it back 15 minutes later and I know it took me half an hour to read it, I have my doubts), but think that this is one they actually would.   

Ms. Yingling

No comments:

Post a Comment