Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Review - Jinx and the Doom Fight Crime

Jinx and the Doom Fight Crime
by Lisa Mantchev
illustrated by Samantha Cotterill
Date: 2018
Publisher: Simon Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 32
Format: e-book
Source: library

Jinx and her little brother, the Doom, are pretty typical kids—except when they turn into superheroes and fight crime—in this relatable celebration of siblings and imagination by the author of Strictly No Elephants.

A typical day for Jinx and the Doom looks like this: wake up, eat breakfast, brush teeth—then FIGHT CRIME! These rambunctious kids used to fight each other, until one day they realized that they could use their powers for good instead of evil. So now they protect the planet! Defend the innocent! And then stop to have lunch.

Bright cut-paper, comic book–style illustrations highlight the power of imagination and the joy of having a sibling to play with.

(synopsis from Goodreads)

Jinx and the Doom Fight Crime is difficult for me to review. I liked the illustrations. The text? Not so much.

There's no story to speak of, just a premise: Jinx and her little brother, known as the Doom, imagine that they're superheroes and that they "fight crime". Unfortunately, this part of the book offers a rather confused definition of "crime". Mom wanting to wash a teddy bear? That's a crime. The dog got dirty? Total crime. The toy elephant cast a shadow on the wall? The most heinous crime of all! I guess they could be considered crimes in the eyes of a child, but I felt it was a little too oversimplified, and it actually took me a couple of read-throughs to figure out what the "crimes" actually were. The message of working together (rather than fighting each other) is fine. I guess I just hoped for a little more criminality in the "crimes". (Like... the dog burying the teddy bear in the garden. Or Mom feeding the kids broccoli rather than pizza. I'm not asking for murder, here, but I couldn't really see what was so bad about the teddy bear needing a wash; how is that criminal?)

The illustrations, on the other hand, I really liked. They reminded me a bit of those in Pillowland (it appears to be a similar technique, although the overall look is different). The cut-paper pieces add a bit of visual interest, and the limited colour palette makes the whole thing look more like a comic book.

So, taking everything into account, I found this one just okay. The real crime here is the weak text, which is saved by the cute illustrations.

Quotable moment:

Premise: 3/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 4/5
Illustrations: 4/5
Originality: 3/5

Enjoyment: 2/5

Overall: 3 out of 5

No comments:

Post a Comment