For the parent or grandparent who is looking for a book to enchant their middle grade youngster’s imagination, this would be a good choice. This author and illustrator have provided 3rd to 7th graders with a hilarious read which is written in a very humorous cartoon and text format. The main characters, Andy and Terry, have been charged by their publisher to produce the book they had promised, which is now overdue, by the very next day.
The book becomes the comical story of how it came to be, and it literally explodes off the page with laughs as the reader learns of all their escapades on a single day in their lives. Andy and Terry seem like overgrown kids, and the reader will romp through the pages with them, as they alternate between procrastination and determination in their effort to fulfill their obligation. The banter between them will absolutely delight youngsters.
In this first book of a new series, Andy, the author, and Terry, the illustrator, live in a wonderful, imaginary 13-story treehouse, with amenities a child can only dream of: see-through pools, an automatic marshmallow dispenser that knows to spit them into your mouth when you are hungry, a video conferencing telephone. The wondrous discoveries on each floor will enchant the 8-12 year old. Magical things occur as if they are everyday occurrences, and the ordinary becomes extraordinary under the pens of both these talented men. The drawings are so much fun to explore, although some are a bit too busy as to become complicated, most are really easy to unravel and follow. They are simply drawn and very clever. Each new chapter follows from the preceding anecdote and is illustrated appropriately.
There is one cautionary note to parents. Some language is not politically correct and might not be considered acceptable. The use of terms like stupid and birdbrain do occur, but they are not overused and seem appropriate to the episode, rather than insulting. There are some silly violent behaviors but nothing bad really seems to happen as a result. Also, lying is discussed as a method of solving a problem. Although some of the episodes are a bit gruesome, none are over the top, and in the end, the reader will definitely be left chuckling and not concerned. The escapades are really witty, and the silly humor in this book will give every reader something to smile or laugh about.
Overall, after all is said and done, this book sure captured the way young middle school kids talk to each other and think.