Monday, September 3, 2018

Review - The Bad Guys

The Bad Guys (The Bad Guys #1)
by Aaron Blabey
Date: 2015
Publisher: Scholastic
Reading level: C
Book type: graphic novel
Pages: 144
Format: e-book
Source: library

They sound like bad guys, they look like bad guys... and they even smell like bad guys. But Mr. Wolf, Mr. Piranha, Mr. Snake, and Mr. Shark are about to change all of that...

Mr. Wolf has a daring plan for the Bad Guys' first good mission. They are going to break two hundred dogs out of the Maximum Security City Dog Pound. Will Operation Dog Pound go smoothly? Will the Bad Guys become the Good Guys? And will Mr. Snake please stop swallowing Mr. Piranha?!

(synopsis from Goodreads)

Okay... well, that was... interesting.

I think it was a little younger than I was expecting. Most of the graphic novels I've read so far have been for middle graders, but this one is really aimed at younger kids. You've got some funny characters, some potty humour, and a basic story. What's not to like? I mean, if you're eight years old...

An overly exuberant wolf decides he wants to go straight, and he takes some of his bad-guy friends along for the ride. There's Mr. Snake, who likes to swallow things. There's Mr. Piranha, who likes to bite things (and who I heard in my head as Cheech Marin for some reason). Lastly, there's Mr. Shark, who is... well, a big bad shark. They're not as enthused about this do-gooder project as the wolf, but they go along with his plans, anyway.

I wasn't that crazy about the plot, but by the time the book was over, I was kind of wanting more. Some parts were kind of funny (like the dog jail, and the way all the dogs kept thinking Mr. Piranha was a sardine). Of course, there had to be some fart jokes thrown in there. And, for some reason, Mr. Piranha has a tongue that looks like a pair of testicles. I have no idea why, and kids might not even notice, but it was kind of a WTF moment for me when I saw that.

This is apparently the first book in a series. I doubt I'll be reading the rest. But I can see how this would be a great series for reluctant young readers.

Plot: 3/5
Characters: 4/5
Pace: 4/5
Writing & Editing: 4/5
Illustration: 3/5
Originality: 4/5

Enjoyment: 3/5

Overall Rating: 3.5 out of 5 ladybugs

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