Another Gem from the Hale Duo

2 Fuzzy, 2 Furious is the second volume in the Unbeatable Squirrel Girl series written by Shannon Hale and Dean Hale.  Shannon is the Newbery-winning author of The Princess Academy.  Her husband, Dean, quite keeps up with her.

This middle grade series from the Marvel universe gives you  philosophy, literary writing, word play, and action/adventure in one lovely piece.  Is it unseemly for a grandmother to be fangirling? I may not squeal when someone mentions the series, but I do intend to read every volume of it as it is written.

The characters are not caricatures.  The Hale’s wonderfully capture teenage angst. The superheroes are beautifully flawed. The relationships are sometimes rocky, but not mean.

Don’t take my word for it. Here are a couple of quotes from the book.  The first is from an Ana Sofia chapter.  She is SQ’s best human friend.

“After a few hours online, Ana Sofia was a hop, skip, and a jump from giving up on humanity entirely and locking herself in the attic Emily Dickenson-style—but with the internet. She could totally do Dickinson as long as she had a laptop with a high-speed connection.

“But even offline, the tension kept building.”

My favorite philosophical conversation takes place between SQ (aka Doreen) and her parents, Maureen and Dor.  She’s telling them that she’ll be out late because she  has to confront Hydra. (The Avengers are busy battling Thanos in outer space.) She doesn’t tell them the whole story, however, because we all know that parents of teenagers can’t take the whole story.  What she does tell her parents is that she just doesn’t know if she knows what she’s doing.

“Can I tell you a secret?” Maureen said. “We don’t know what we’re doing either.”

“Well, yeah,” said Doreen.

“They laughed, and Dor cut into the butter pecan cake he’d baked earlier without knowing how much they’d need it now.

“You know you’re doing great, right?” said her father, his mouth full of cake.  “You know nobody knows what they’re doing and we’re all just figuring out how to be us as we go along.”

This book is highly recommended, whether you’re a young reader or an old one.

 

Jacob Wonderbar for President of the Universe

I downloaded Nathan Bransford’s first Jacob Wonderbar novel to my Kindle because I followed the former literary agent’s blog. I picked up the second book, Jacob Wonderbar for President of the Universe, because the first book surprised and entertained me. The second book is as good as the first.
Bransford’s space adventures have strangeness, strong female characters, and male characters with enough flaws to keep us reading. This second book doesn’t end as neatly as the first; the last lines tell us just where Wonderbar, that nemesis of substitute teachers, will go next.
I plan to go with him.