Friday, February 24, 2017

The Bad Guys by Aaron Blabey

This is pure snark from beginning to end. A hyperactive wolf has decided he doesn’t want to be a bad guy anymore and he collects some other famous villains; a great white shark, rattlesnake, and piranha to form a club to do Good Deeds. It’s an uphill struggle, first to rescue a kitten and then dogs from the pound, but the Bad Guys eventually decide they are up for this Good Deeds stuff, in their own, sharp-toothed, style.

Black and white pencil sketches fill this beginning chapter graphic novel with partially-eaten rap sheets for the various characters and their distinct personalities. Beginning with Mr. Wolf’s manic enthusiasm, the story introduces cool, sardonic Mr. Snake, sinister Mr. Piranha, and dim but volatile Mr. Shark. Their bulbous eyes and toothy smiles bring out the personality of each and readers will giggle along as the club starts out in their classic car, looking cool, and searching for good deeds to do.

Verdict: Hilarious fun. If you really wanted to you could parlay it into a lesson about not judging by appearances, but since none of the creatures are exactly innocent…. It’s probably better not to. Just enjoy the snark and share it with readers who like the wit and humor of Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen. I won’t be adding this until next year, as I only purchase new beginning chapter paperbacks in January, but it’s definitely on my list for 2018.

ISBN: 9780545912402; Published 2016 by Scholastic; Borrowed from another library in my consortium

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