Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Review -- Squish No. 5: Game On!

Title: Squish: Game On!
Authors: Jennifer L. Holm & Matthew Holm
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers
Pages: 96
Review Copy: Digital ARC from Edelweiss
Release Date: May 28, 2013

Summary: Introducing Squish-a hilarious, action packed graphic novel series from the award-winning creators of Babymouse! Filled with superheroes, comics within comics, and gross-out science, Squish is perfect for fans of Dav Pilkey's Captain Underpants, Dan Gutman's Weird School, and Jarrett Krosoczka's Lunch Lady.

Beep! Beep! Squish can't get enough of his awesome new video game Mitosis! (Mitosis is what happens when cells divide. Who says video games can't be educational?) In fact, he may even be obsessed! He plays at home...at school...even in his sleep! Are video games taking over Squish's life?! And can Squish's favorite comic book hero, Super Amoeba, stop the Creeping Black Mold that's taking over Small Pond? Find out inSquish #5: Game On-saving the world, one cell at a time!

Yowza! You can draw comics, too! Look in the back to find out how to draw one of the Squish characters! Also includes instructions for a sensational science experiment you can do at home! Shazam! --image from Goodreads & summary from Edelweiss

Review: Before I even got to the story, a smile broke out on my face. Colby Sharp (a Nerdybookclub member) must have flipped when he saw his name on the dedication page. He is a huge Babymouse and Squish fan and has promoted these books through Twitter, his blog and in his classroom. 

As for the story, the Holm duo has hit on a theme that many readers will relate to easily: video game obsession. If it hasn't affected them, they have likely seen it strike friends and/or relatives. It is so difficult to set aside a game when it is all shiny and new. That is especially true when there is a bit of competition with everyone else around you. Squish is such a great character because though he is an amoeba, he is still a complicated being with many good qualities and a healthy dose of flaws such as obsessing over a game to the detriment of all else. His imperfections, of course, are a large part of his appeal.

There is so much more going on though besides this single storyline. As always, Super Amoeba comics make an appearance with a lesson to be learned. There are always many jokes all along the way such as those related to Squish's literature assignment -- Moby Dick with his quote, "Call me Squishmael." There is also a small dose of science as we learn about mitosis -- the theme of the video game the friends are determined to master.

My students have loved every single volume of Squish and I believe they will fall for this one too. There is plenty of humor for all of them with a dash of teaching and a whole lot of fun. Get it soon!

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