A first rate kickoff: fresh, fast, and funny.

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THE TIME MUSEUM

Both deadly dangers and exciting research opportunities await science-mad Delia Bean once she stumbles into a museum with portals to any time and place on Earth.

Time and space open up for Delia after she discovers that her beloved uncle Lyndon is in fact a time traveler from 51st-century Hoboken and in charge of the Earth Time Museum—a truly massive institution charged with preserving our entire planet’s past and future. Invited to try out for a museum internship, Delia plunges into a whirlwind course of study and training with five other young competitors from various eras, then joins them in three on-site tests: a Cretaceous scavenger hunt; a trip to the ancient library of Alexandria to pick its most wondrous holding (“a Homeric book of practical jokes!” “That’s a contender!”); and finally an expedition 1,000 years into the future to help deal with a worrisome plague of anachronistic “time discrepancies.” Loux uses only minimal variations in hue to signal his mostly light-skinned cast’s diverse origins, but his fluid lines and bright colors make the action (of which there is plenty) easy to follow. By the end his young ensemble, having weathered challenges ranging from their own rivalries to T. Rexes and a time rift that threatens to annihilate London, is a bonded team ready and eager for new adventures.

A first rate kickoff: fresh, fast, and funny. (Graphic science fiction. 10-13)

Pub Date: Feb. 21, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-59643-849-1

Page Count: 256

Publisher: First Second

Review Posted Online: Nov. 16, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2016

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Readers will definitely want to have, know or be Maggie’s brothers—but she herself proves to be no slouch when it comes to...

FRIENDS WITH BOYS

Nervous, home-schooled by her absent and much-missed mom and saddled with three adored older brothers—and a ghost—Maggie starts high school.

Largely but not entirely left by her doting upper-grade sibs (who had “first days” of their own) to sink or swim, Maggie starts off in lonely isolation but quickly finds two great friends in Mohawk-wearing, multiply pierced, exuberantly logorrheic classmate Lucy and her quieter (but also Mohawk-topped) brother Alistair. Simmering complications soon reach a boil as Maggie discovers that Alistair and her own oldest brother Daniel have some sort of bad history, and on a more eldritch note, a woman’s ghost that Maggie had occasionally seen in the nearby graveyard takes to floating into her house and right up to her face. Filling monochrome ink-and-wash panels with wonderfully mobile faces, expressively posed bodies, wordless conversations in meaningful glances, funny banter and easy-to-read visual sequences ranging from hilarious to violent, Hicks crafts an upbeat, uncommonly engaging tale rich in humor, suspense, and smart, complex characters.

Readers will definitely want to have, know or be Maggie’s brothers—but she herself proves to be no slouch when it comes to coping with change and taking on challenges. (Graphic fantasy. 11-13)

Pub Date: Feb. 28, 2012

ISBN: 978-1-59643-556-8

Page Count: 224

Publisher: First Second/Roaring Brook

Review Posted Online: Jan. 4, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2012

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Packaged to recall other diary tales of middle school (faux-spiral binding, scratchy, faux-handprinted type—often hard to...

JOURNAL OF A SCHOOLYARD BULLY

NOTES ON NOOGIES, WET WILLIES, AND WEDGIES

From the Journal of a Schoolyard Bully series , Vol. 1

Combine Roald Dahl’s Twits and other villains, mix with the first-person–journaling trope and the comedic result might look something like this.

In his “Bully’s Log,” seventh-grader Niko Kayler provides an episodic text-and-pictures look at what he regards as the craft of bullying. Anything smelly, humiliating or painful (if not exactly lethal) provides the essence of a good trick to play on his victims, and he doesn’t stint on firing any number of wildly exaggerated blows at the random nerds who annoy him. Niko’s rogues’ gallery of bullies he most admires includes both Lucifer and Santa Claus. Katz picks the low-hanging…er, fruit of boogers, poop and farts to fill out his young antihero’s arsenal of tricks and tips for successful bullying. Occasional exclamations of “God!” and the use of adjectives like “mother-puking” send Niko’s malevolence veering off into slightly older teen territory (he says of cyberbullying, “I think it’s cheap and dirty. Like falling in love in Las Vegas”), and how many middle schoolers will recognize a reference to M. Night Shyamalan? The energy also seems to flag a bit with one relentlessly malicious sort of mayhem following another.

Packaged to recall other diary tales of middle school (faux-spiral binding, scratchy, faux-handprinted type—often hard to read—and roughly drawn illustrations), this take on the rotten inner life of a true bully is a mixed bag. (Fiction. 10-13)

Pub Date: Sept. 13, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-312-68158-6

Page Count: 272

Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin

Review Posted Online: Aug. 3, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2011

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