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THE GREATEST POWER by Wendelin Van Draanen


(The Gecko & Sticky #2)

by Wendelin Van Draanen and illustrated by Stephen Gilpin

Age Range: 7 - 12

Pub Date: May 26th, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-375-84377-8
Publisher: Knopf

This follow-up to the first Gecko and Sticky (The Villain’s Lair, 2009) adventure delivers even more wacky dealings with the devilish evildoer Damien Black and his band of ne’er-do-wells, The Bandito Brothers. This time, Dave, aka the Gecko, and his talking quipster lizard, Sticky, witness Black’s theft of an heirloom ring and robbery of the local bank. Dave still has the “wall-walking” and “invisibility” ingots that, when placed in his Aztec wristband, give him their corresponding powers, but it’s clear that our brave, young superhero’s greatest strengths lie in the benevolent way he uses them. The magic comes in handy as they pursue Black through the rank sewer system to his creepy, booby-trapped mansion. Inside they encounter trouble in the form of a highly caffeinated, espresso-brewing rhesus monkey. It all ends in a crazy face-off when Dave tries to return the loot and Black uses some funky gadgetry to stop him. Written with gleeful wit, rapid-fire pacing and snappy dialogue and accompanied by Gilpin’s comical pen-and-ink illustrations, this second volume’s conclusion promises a forthcoming, deliciously dastardly installment. (Fiction. 7-12)