IN THE TRENCHES by Justin Larocca Hansen


From the "Secondhand Heroes" series, volume 2
Age Range: 9 - 12
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Superhero brothers must face off against a particularly nefarious foe: their history teacher.

White siblings Hudson and Tucker contracted superpowers after receiving secondhand items, purchased at a yard sale, imbued with magical abilities. However, all of the articles sold at the sale contained powers, and their once-meek history teacher Mr. Motstander (known as Trench when he’s wearing his insidious-looking gas mask) has become hell-bent on acquiring every item to make himself supremely powerful in order to vanquish all evildoers—but absolute power corrupts….The brothers soon find the other kids who have possession of the additional items and meet Elvira, a black goth girl who purchased chunky, knee-high boots that allow her to run with superspeed, and Ethan Chen, a Chinese-American boy who acquired a harmonica that allows him to talk to fish and breathe underwater. Together the group must defeat Trench before he and his army of golems wipe out their island community. With a diverse cast, a uniquely crafted world, and an interesting examination of both superhero tropes and the meaning of good and evil, this sophomore effort is not only a lot of fun, but also thought-provoking. Following a somewhat scattershot first volume, Hansen has taken control of his narrative; those put off by the previous offering should certainly give this one a try.

The heroes may be secondhand, but the story is quickly becoming first-rate. (Graphic adventure. 9-12)

Pub Date: Feb. 7th, 2017
ISBN: 978-0-7352-2810-8
Page count: 160pp
Publisher: Dial
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1st, 2016


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