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Legends of Zita the Spacegirl Paperback – September 4, 2012


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Legends of Zita the Spacegirl + The Return of Zita the Spacegirl (Zita the Spacegirl Series) + Zita the Spacegirl
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 250L (What's this?)
  • Series: Zita the Spacegirl (Book 2)
  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: First Second (September 4, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1596434473
  • ISBN-13: 978-1596434479
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 7.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,350 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 3-6-Hatke has again conjured up a rich and satisfying story with enchanting characters and delightful humor. Lumponians are seeking Zita's help to save their planet from the dangerous invasion of star hearts that will strip a planet to its bedrock. Convinced that she is their only hope, they offer as payment the remaining jump crystal that will allow her to return home. They happen upon a robot masquerading as Zita and employ this counterfeit hero to save them. While Zita does save the Lumponians and her rivalry with robot Zita is nicely resolved, the story is obviously a setup for further adventures as she must rescue her companion mouse. Hatke's humor is in top form, including the creation of dialects with unique spellings and language that perfectly capture the each character's personality. Even robots have a language. Wordplay is omnipresent, such as names based on musical terms, and the star-hearts invasion being described as a "heart attack." Inventive sound effects such as "scootch" and "snuffle" and the gift of a "slap in a box" are among the many bon mots youngsters will savor. The characters' expressive faces are given a charm and attention to detail that will captivate readers of all ages, and the beautifully illuminated images of space inspire awe. Legends offers a parody of celebrity status and gently explores the question of notoriety versus heroism. Fans of Zita's adventures will relish this installment.-Babara M. Moon, Suffolk Cooperative Library System, NYα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

About the Author

Ben Hatke's first graphic novel was Zita the Spacegirl. He has published comics stories in the Flight series as well as Flight Explorer.  In addition to writing and drawing comics, he also paints in the naturalist tradition and, occasionally, performs one-man fire shows.
 
Hatke lives and works in the Shenandoah Valley with his wife and their boisterous pack of daughters.  His work can be seen online at www.benhatke.com
 
A Q&A WITH LEGENDS OF ZITA THE SPACEGIRL AUTHOR BEN HATKE

1.  Do you tend to think of yourself more as a writer or as an artist?

In my case, I think the two are pretty inseparable.  I work a lot on the structure of my stories and I get a lot of joy out of that, but my art is not just in the service of the story, it's very much a part of the storytelling.  I find things like characters’ body language to be a wonderful storytelling tool.  I’ve also lately been interested in projects that separate words and pictures -- illustrated novels on the one hand and wordless comics on the other.

2.  The Zita books feature some pretty strange creatures.  You must've had a strange childhood!

I’ve always been drawn to weird creatures.  Some of my early drawings are vast underground scenes full of creatures that aren’t that far removed from some of the species in the Zita books.  I was lucky in that my parents exposed me to a lot of different influences -- all kinds of books and movies.  And we spent days spent exploring rivers.  We were even active members of the Society for Creative Anachronisms!

3. Out of all that, what kinds of things influenced you the most?

When I was a very small child my older cousin took me to see The Dark Crystal at the theater.  We had to leave about halfway through the film because I was crying.  The grownups all said it must have been too scary.  I’ve seen The Dark Crystal since, but I also remember very clearly seeing those creatures on the screen for the first time.  All these years later I wonder if maybe I wasn’t just frightened, but overloaded by the the intense creativity.   I still think that they did more with those puppets than we do with CGI today.

4.  How does Legends of Zita differ from Zita the Spacegirl?

I feel like this volume lives up to the title a little better in that there are scenes that take place in SPACE.  I’m finally putting some “space” in “spacegirl.

5. Can you tell us about one of your favorite scenes or moments in this new story?

There’s a chase through the back alleys of a domed space city that culminates with the dramatic entrance of a new character.  I’m proud of that part.  There’s another moment toward the end of the book, a moment of danger for Zita, that I decided to make into a single image spread across two pages with no dialogue.  That’s the joy of comics: you can show any given moment a hundred different ways but when it works it’s a lot of fun.


More About the Author

Ben Hatke is an artist, writer and comics creator. He is the creator of the Zita the Spacegirl graphic novels and a contributor to the Flight Anthologies. Ben learned painting through studying the Italian Masters and by training at the Charles Cecil Studios in Florence.

He lives and works in Front Royal, Virginia with his lovely wife and growing family. He loves swords and whistles and juggling and adventures. Breakfast is his favorite meal of the day.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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My daughter loves reading the Zita books, and reads them over-and-over.
Amazon Customer
Ben Hatke is good at writing stories with action, suspense, and heart, while also creating beautiful illustrations to look at.
'Spensive Taste
I can’t wait to read the third book in this series, The Return of Zita the Spacegirl.
K. Eckert

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Ana Braga-Henebry VINE VOICE on September 5, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
We fell in love with Zita for many reasons: first of all Zita is good, brave, kind and cute! Then the characters created by Ben are unique, original and hilarious! The story is fast-paced and very adventurous! The art is wonderful: Ben is a fantastic, talented and solid artist.
We had pre-ordered the second volume and it arrived yesterday! Our my eleven year old was so excited! She read it from cover to cover and then came to me exclaiming I must read it as well. Thank you Ben Hatke for the wonderful time spent together with my daughter last night. We read if aloud and stopped to enjoy all of the intricacies of the artwork. My daughter is very artistic and loves creating her comics characters, and nothing escaped her. She also got the first Zita and compared the two. After we were done she went on Ben's blog to find out about the third Zita!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Andy Shuping on September 4, 2012
Format: Paperback
I remember discovering Zita in webcomic format several years ago and being entranced, not only with the character of Zita and the adventures she took, but Ben's incredible artwork as well. Sadly at some point I lost track of the site and Zita. And then...last year Zita the Spacegirl was released and Zita was able to tell us her full story of how she got into space. And why she was a hero. I feel in love with Zita all over again and I couldn't wait to read more about her adventures. Thankfully Ben is continuing the story and now we get the next chapter in Zita's life as she attempts to make her way home.

In a junkyard on a planet far, far away a robot, a imprint-a-tron, crawls out of the wreckage around it and discovers a poster of Zita. Meanwhile not too far away Zita's ship has just touched so that she can meet her fans and continue to look for a way home. Of course her newest fan, the imprint-a-tron, will be there and it will be made up too look just like Zita! Zita, looking for a few moments to herself, takes advantage of the doppelganger and heads off for her own little adventure. But troubles ensues as the robot decides it wants Zita's life! And its off on a mission that it may not return from, as well as creating some trouble along the way. Zita in pursuit of her friends quickly finds herself on wanted posters and the space police will stop at nothing to catch her. Can Zita make her way back to her life and those of her friends? Or will she end up wandering the far reaches of space for ever trying to get back home?



As much as I was looking forward to this second volume, I have to admit I was a bit worried when I started reading the story. The beginning seemed a bit slow and the story was almost predictable.
Read more ›
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By M. OBrien on September 4, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My nine-year-old read this aloud to his sister (8) and brother (5) in one sitting the minute it arrived. All three enjoyed it very much. My oldest pronounced it "even better" than the first Zita book (Zita the Spacegirl).

The sequel has more adventures, I'm told, and some new characters, including a robot who tries to impersonate Zita.

The kids loved it -- and when I can get my hands on it, I'll read it too.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By CameraJunkie on June 19, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Love Zita the Spacegirl! My girls love comic books and finding one their age level and with a girl hero too?
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Lisa on May 30, 2013
Format: Paperback
Legends of Zita the Spacegirl is the second in the Zita the Spacegirl series. The first, Zita the Spacegirl, was a 2012-13 Bluebonnet nominee, and the winner at my daughters' school.

I enjoyed Legends of Zita as much, if not more, than the original. The characters are fun and endearing, and the graphic art does a great job of adding subtext to the story. I won't claim that I enjoy graphic novels as much as written novels, quite the opposite. I would love to read a Zita the Spacegirl novel, although I would miss the pictures of the characters so it would have to be an illustrated novel.

Theme/Theology: Self-sacrifice

In Zita the Spacegirl, Zita's reckless actions cause her and a friend to be trapped on a planet that is about to be destroyed. Zita finally takes responsibility for her actions and sends her friend back home (only one could go), leaving her trapped far away from home.

In the Legends of Zita, Zita is trying to get home and she's growing tired of her super-hero popularity. A robot impersonates Zita and places a whole planet, Zita, and her friends at risk. Once again, a reckless disregard for rules lands Zita and her friend Mouse in trouble, this time with planetary authorities. Someone else besides Zita has to sacrifice themselves to save the planet, leaving Zita to deal with the consequences of her rule breaking.

Rating: G

Social Issues: Breaking the rules, respect for authority.

This is a fantastic series and I don't mind saying that I'm a fan.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By 'Spensive Taste on March 11, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My six-year-old son and I read both Zita books together and have loved them both. Ben Hatke is good at writing stories with action, suspense, and heart, while also creating beautiful illustrations to look at. We can't wait for more! Keep up the excellent work, Mr. Hatke!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Sydnia De Franco on October 12, 2012
Format: Paperback
The 2nd graphic novel about Zita is as strong as its predecessor & our children (6&9) loved it just as much as they loved the 1st! Hatke's drawings are incredible & he creates such wonderful characters. From warm, caring robots to a brave little girl, Hatke invites you into a world of fantasy & wonder. Your kids will LOVE these books!
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