A friend of mine knows the author (James Kochalka) of Banana Fox and the Secret Sour Society (book one of Banana Fox). Therefore, I thought I would give it a whirl. I knew we had different tastes, but it is always fun to try something new. You never know what you will find.
Sadly, this book fell flat for me. The cliche theme of the Hero/World’s Greatest Detective being clueless, the less than convincing villain, and the “dumb fat kid” did nothing for me. The illustrations are quirky, bright, and not overly busy, but have the action expected. This works for the slapstick, out-there comedy the text brings to the show. But again, there are not my cup of mud.
With that said, kids ages 7 to (young) 10 will get a kick out this graphic novel. The panels are set up in a loosely modern version of a traditional paneling. It is part graphic novel and picture book. The reader will love the obvious, but goofy humor. The villains are funny looking (green foxes) and obviously bad (the bad guys minions are little green, “bad apples”). Okay, that I liked/thought amusing. Yet, the best part of the story was the ending. There is a twist that I did not see coming due to the obvious nature of the story (Hero not so much; Sidekick saves the day, Bad Guy loses). And this surprise was the perfect way to end the book and to set up book two.
I probably will not be getting book two, but I will find out if my friend has the first as I know her children will love a Banana Fox smoothie, I mean, Banana Fox Detective!