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The Odd Squad, Bully Bait (An Odd Squad Book) Hardcover – February 12, 2013


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 500L (What's this?)
  • Series: An Odd Squad Book
  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Disney-Hyperion (February 12, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1423169247
  • ISBN-13: 978-1423169246
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #414,913 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 4-7-Seventh-grader Nick spends more time inside his locker than out. Roy, the school bully, constantly tracks him down and throws him in there. When Nick ends up in the guidance counselor's office for the umpteenth time, she assigns him to a group of other misfits called the Safety Patrol. She is convinced that if they form a bond and overcome their "peer allergies" together, they will no longer be targets for bullying. The three kids do have something in common-Roy. As much as they get on one another's nerves, they decide to band together to take him on. Though the plot gets downright silly and a bit confusing at times, the theme of friendship and, eventually, empathy for one another and for the bully, does shine through. The small cartoon illustrations on almost every page are the highlight of the book. They are clever and help clarify some of the story. Especially funny are the depictions of Nick's yoga-practicing grandmother, Meemaw, who always has the perfect wisecrack to sum up a situation. The first of a series, this title will be enjoyed by fans of Jeff Kinney's "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" books (Abrams).-Tina Martin, Arlington Heights Memorial Library, ILα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

Seventh-grade loner Nick Ramsey is so short he fits into his locker, a fact he knows well, thanks to bully Roy. Nick can only confront him surreptitiously by sending taunting texts as mysterious, self-assured “Max.” Guidance counselor Dr. Daniels decides Nick needs to belong to a group and assigns him to safety patrol, along with two other bullied loner misfits, supertall Molly and overweight, geeky Karl. Soon the none-too-enthused trio, guided by offbeat, philosophical janitor Mr. Dupree, set out to stop bullying. But amidst high jinks and missteps, they discover the meaning of friendship and compassion, and find confidence along the way. With generously interspersed witty cartoon drawings (final art not seen), the first Odd Squad title offers an entertaining take on some familiar themes by blending humor, absurdity, and realism into a supportive message. Despite occasional story predictabilities, narrator Nick is an engaging antihero whose issues and dilemmas are sympathetically portrayed. Sundry side characters, including Nick’s quirky grandma, Memaw, further enliven this enjoyable read, which is likely to appeal to Wimpy Kid readers. Grades 4-7, --Shelle Rosenfeld

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Customer Reviews

Great illustrations, too.
ireadalot
She laughed and smiled as she read, and even read her favorite parts out loud to me.
Amy Parham
A page-turner with goofy illustrations and very engaging characters.
Neva Lockett

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Carol Swanson on February 24, 2013
Format: Hardcover
This is a great book. SO much better than (dare I say it?) Diary of a wimpy kid. I've worked in school libraries for 8 years and raised 4 children before that. I've seen a lot of youth literature. This book is great. It challenges the imagination, the illustrations are great, the story line is true to life, and it just makes me laugh out loud. It's so easy to read and it doesn't 'talk down' to the reader. Thanks Mike Fry, for a great book !
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Neva Lockett on February 12, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Yummy with a crisp first course of nutty characters followed by a meaty central dish with a peppery sauce of hilarity and finished with a complex sweet and lively coffee.
I laugh-out-loud loved this book which was a damn good thing because -in the interest of full disclosure- Mike Fry is a long time friend and neighbor. I had a lot of confidence in the great quality his work from Over The Hedge, etc., but when he allowed me to read his book pre-publication, what if I didn't care for it? Fortunately, no problem. It is both great fun and interestingly suspenseful. A page-turner with goofy illustrations and very engaging characters. It is getting justifiably nifty reviews all over the place.
Read this yourself and then give it to your favorite middle-school kids.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mister Science on February 24, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
So, I'm reading the Odd Squad and thinking I can't give it more than 4 stars, tops, and then somebody tells me this book is actually for middle-grade kids, like 8-12 year olds or something. I thought it was for MIDDLE-AGED kids, like me. It's a subtle difference but an appreciable one. For genuine kids, I give it five thumbs up: it's pretty funny, it's got the "message thing" without being preachy, plus there's cool pictures. I mean what more could you want? That's middle-grade appropriate, anyway. As a veteran reader of night-time stories, I can testify that a little wit that works for both listener and reader goes a long, long way. This book would work for younger kids that way. But it seems aimed at "tweens" who are ready to step out on their own -- and need something that might actually hold their interest without unduly horrifying the parental unit. That makes it the perfect "favorite uncle" gift. At least that's what I'm counting on. Plus, I heard Mike Fry, the author, speak at a book party and he claims to have a mortgage to pay and a kid of his own still to put through college. He looks a little geeky for that to be true, but it did seem like the tears were real, so maybe so. I'm willing to chip in 8 or 10 bucks to the cause. All in all: good book, good price, a lot of fun. Stands alone but sounds like there could be a sequel.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ink and Page on February 12, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Rating: 3.5

The Low Down: Nick might as well move into his school locker. He practically lives there, considering the number of times that Roy has stuffed him in it. Then the school counselor, Dr. Daniels, decides that there's safety in numbers and makes Nick team up with the hugely tall Molly and the pudgy and guileless Karl. They all get bullied because they suffer from peer allergies, the counselor says.

Thinking his crush will like him if he can best the bully, Nick decides to try and take care of Roy with the help of his new friends. But has he gone too far in his pursuit of justice and become a bully himself?

Best Thang `Bout It: The story here is inventive and funny and will be devoured by kids from late elementary to middle school. The best character is the janitor, Mr. Dupree, who tells the Squad "true" stories to motivate them and quotes Shakespeare to make good points. Though the kids don't always understand, Mr. Dupree knows that when they need to, they will. Bring the crazy.

I Wanna Say: Hopefully this will be a series, as I didn't feel like we got to know Molly and Karl well at all. Well, we probably did with Karl; he's pretty WYSIWYG. And yes, it is inevitable that this book will be compared to the wildly popular Wimpy Kid series because of the subject matter and the drawings. While there are similarities, The Odd Squad will do just fine on its own.

The Bottom Line: It's a fun read for the middle grades. And if the drawings look familiar to you, Mr. Fry is one of the two people who work on the Over the Hedge comic.

The Odd Squad: Bully Bait by Michael Fry was published today by Disney-Hyperion Books. A free copy of this book was given to Ink and Page in return for an honest review. Big thanks to NetGalley and the Publisher.

Genre: Middle Grades Fiction
Ages: 8 and up
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Brad on February 12, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book for my nephews, but wanted to read a few chapters before handing it over. Then I read the whole book. It's hilarious. The illustrations only enhance the great comedy that's already on the page. But there are some surprisingly sweet twists the book takes as the narrative progresses. I can't for my nephews to read. Funny stuff!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By RussellWGroves on February 15, 2013
Format: Hardcover
It's very rare that writers capture the essence of childhood fun within a children's book, but Michael Fry goes far and beyond the call of duty to do just this. Great read and great characters!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amy Parham on February 16, 2013
Format: Hardcover
My daughter got this book and could not put it down. She laughed and smiled as she read, and even read her favorite parts out loud to me. She was still talking about it days after she finished. Great book!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Fabiana Biasi on July 29, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I liked how there's Emily in the book!
I would recommend this to anyone!
I rated this book a 4 because sometimes the book was kind of boring... Bit it was mostly good and fun! 😄
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Most Recent Customer Reviews


More About the Author

Michael Fry has been a cartoonist/writer/entrepreneur for over 30 years.

In addition to The Odd Squad middle grade series of illustrated novels for Disney/Hyperion, Fry has created or co/created four international syndicated comic strips including Over the Hedge which runs in over 150 papers worldwide. Over the Hedge was nominated for Best Comic Strip in 2006 by the National Cartoonist Society Rueben Awards. The strip can be seen at http://www.gocomics.com/overthehedge.

Over the Hedge inspired the 2006 hit DreamWorks Animation feature animated film that grossed over $336 million dollars in worldwide box office. The film featured the lead voices of Bruce Willis, Garry Shandling and Steve Carell. The film originated at Fox where I co-wrote the screenplay.

Another comic, Committed, was produced into a prime time animated series by Nelvana. It debuted on CTV in Canada in 2001 and later on the WE Network domestically. Committed featured the lead voices of Catherine O'Hara, Eugene Levy and Dave Foley. It has appeared in over 30 countries around the world. I was the Executive Producer.

He is also the co-founder and President of RingTales, a new media company that animates print comics for all digital media. RingTales produces short (15-30 second) ad-supported animations for the web, mobile and portable digital devices. RingTales has the exclusive rights to animate Dilbert, The New Yorker cartoons, Over the Hedge, Pearls Before Swine and many other popular properties. RingTales has produced over 1000 animations that have been viewed over 260 million times since 2007. Most can be seen at http://www.youtube.com/ringtales.

Fry writes and draws from his studio in the Hill Country near Austin, Texas where he lives with his wife, Kim, their dog, Jack and several shrub-eating cows.

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The Odd Squad, Bully Bait (An Odd Squad Book)
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