STRANGER THINGS HAVE HAPPENED by Jeff Strand

STRANGER THINGS HAVE HAPPENED

Age Range: 12 - 14
BUY NOW FROM
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

Marcus is a high school freshman whose vomit-inducing stage fright presents a major barrier to his dream of becoming a world-famous magician.

Inspired and mentored by his great-grandfather, the retired Zachary the Stupendous, Marcus has been honing his craft since infancy. When his great-grandfather passes away unexpectedly, it is up to Marcus to uphold the family honor by developing and performing a truly spectacular illusion. With an ever narrowing window in which to prepare, combined with stress from school bullies and the aptly named Sinister Seamus, Marcus leans on his few friends to pull off the event. Marcus and his friends seem to dwell in a predominantly if not exclusively white world. Strand stuffs the dialogue full of witty banter, which is at first amusing, but over the course of the book, it gives the impression that each character, including the third-person narrator, is a would-be vaudevillian comic. The result is little depth or differentiation to the characters’ speech, and their endless riffs become annoying rather than endearing. Though the central characters are all high school students, the hit-you-over-the-head humor combined with ridiculous plot elements make the book feel as though it’s written for a much younger audience.

Best enjoyed with willfully suspended disbelief and a laugh track. (Fiction. 12-14)

Pub Date: April 1st, 2017
ISBN: 978-1-4926-4539-9
Page count: 304pp
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15th, 2017




MORE BY JEFF STRAND

ChildrenTHE GREATEST ZOMBIE MOVIE EVER by Jeff Strand
by Jeff Strand
ChildrenI HAVE A BAD FEELING ABOUT THIS by Jeff Strand
by Jeff Strand
ChildrenA BAD DAY FOR VOODOO by Jeff Strand
by Jeff Strand

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

ChildrenALVIN HO by Lenore Look
by Lenore Look
ChildrenDRAMA by Raina Telgemeier
by Raina Telgemeier
ChildrenESCAPE! by Sid Fleischman
by Sid Fleischman