- Age Range: 10 - 18 years
- Grade Level: 5 - 6
- Series: Battling Boy (Book 2)
- Paperback: 160 pages
- Publisher: First Second (October 13, 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 162672010X
- ISBN-13: 978-1626720107
- Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.5 x 7.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 9 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #769,297 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Fall of the House of West (Battling Boy) Paperback – October 13, 2015
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From School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up—Determined to find her mother's killer, Aurora West, daughter of hero Haggard West, has finally started to patrol the monster-infested streets on her own, despite the protests of her father and her mentor. While the first volume, The Rise of Aurora West (2014), in the prequel series to Pope's Battling Boy (2013, both First Second), was disappointingly more setup and character backstory than action, this volume instantly makes up for lost time. This installment is filled with numerous traps, shoot-outs, and interrogations. However, the book's greatest strength is in the moments between the chaos, as characters are wonderfully fleshed out. As characters slowly reveal their secrets, readers discover, along with Aurora, that the heroes she has always looked up to are cracked and bruised. Rubín's Robert Crumb-inspired artwork is a wonderful throwback to the Silver Age of Comics (1956 to circa 1970). Villains are grotesque and cartoonish, while the heroes have chiseled jaws and perfect posture. The illustrator's choices perfectly echo the themes throughout the narrative. Diagonal gutters and Batman-style sound effects not only add to the nostalgic feel but expertly move the action forward; readers will be flipping through the pages as fast as the bullets flying over Aurora's head. VERDICT The strongest series entry so far—one helluva read.—Peter Blenski, Greenfield Public Library, WI
Forget the capes and tights: this is an entirely accessible and richly imagined superhero tour de force. ―Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"The strongest series entry so far―one helluva read." ―School Library Journal, starred review
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The interesting aspect of the story, the thing that sets it apart from a typical action/adventure/father-daughter-superhero story, is a family dynamic involving the dark secret of Aurora’s mother’s death. There’s also an interesting lesson about what it takes to make a hero believe he (or she) is a hero. Most of the story is playful but the serious moments and the dark moments provide a nice balance.
The art is cute, as if the monsters were inspired by Dr. Seuss.