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Please Don't Tell My Parents I've Got Henchmen Kindle Edition
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|Length: 300 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||
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Top customer reviews
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-Penny doesn't really grow in the story except as a leader.
-Penny's handful of inventions are not interesting.
-This story was pretty much all about Penny's classmates and them coming into their own powers.
-The very last few pages were good. As good as previous books.
-The climax event at the end was kind of lame and unexciting, but as a plot device it did deliver a good ending/resolution.
-Some good scenes with the Audit.
-Marcia and Cat's scenes/personality/pages were almost painful to read. Just terrible characters. (Not quite "Jar Jar" bad, but a lot of pages wasted on them for what is no clear reason.)
Almost all coming of age stories are best in the beginning. I suppose it's true here as well. I really liked book 1 & 2, even though many were disappointed in book 2. However, I found minimal enjoyment in this third book.
The beginning of this book was rocky. The first several chapters didn't have that strong voice and sense of adventure that the first book did, though that eventually recovered and began to be fun again. There were also many editing mistakes, both in terms of line editing and deeper-level proofreading. Particularly confusing was the scene where Bull reunites with his family. I won't say much about it for sake of spoilers, but everything was fine until his wife flips a quarter onto his head and says goodnight? And then everyone burst into tears. I was thoroughly lost by that; I couldn't tell if it was even SUPPOSED to make sense from an outsider's perspective. Like, did she cast some kind of spell on him? Break an enchantment? Was it an inside joke from years prior? Whatever Mr. Roberts intended it to mean, it didn't make the jump from his head to the reader's. There were other examples of this kind of confusion, and at least one line that I absolutely couldn't make any sense of Unfortunately I wasn't taking notes so I can't say what or where they are. I recommend that he finds a new editor from now on, or perhaps gathers a group of core fans to be his dedicated test readers (I volunteer!).
I think I may have identified the key element that books two and three are missing from what the first had: a driving goal.
From the beginning, Penny and her friends wanted to be heroes. When one of her friends did something stupid and got into a fight with a hero, they got labeled as villains. The entire plot of the first book unfolds from there, with them attempting to change sides and continually making their reputation worse. Or better, in the eyes of the villains, who they become more involved with. But then Spider blackmailed them, coerced them into obeying her, and the tension rose. They attempt to thwart Spider's great heist and publicly switch sides to the heroes. Tension rises more, and the final campaign was a wonderful ride with stakes and motivation and the looming threat of failure. It _mattered_ if they won that battle or not, they couldn't just pack up and go home at any time.
I'd need to re-read the second book to be more detailed, but I feel like it was missing that driving motivation, that character yearning. What do they want out of this? Why do they have any stake in this fight?
The third book, like the second, doesn't have a defined goal or a specific desire for the heroes (er, "protagonists"). It also has that sense of a ship set sail on a grand adventure without a compass. At first this seems similar to his other story, Quite Contrary, which is largely just a collection of the main character's adventures through the lands of fairy tales, but the difference is that Quite Contrary _did_ have an overarching plot, it just took a back seat most of the time and only showed up at the beginning, any time in the middle when the scenery needed to change, and the end.
Which isn't to say that the adventure isn't fun. It _was_ fun. Even if it wasn't all it could or should be, I'll always be happy with more stories of the Inscrutable Machine. I gave a four stars for a reason, I do recommend it, but it isn't the perfect little darling that Please Don't Tell My Parents I'm a Supervillain was.
But if you haven't yet, read the first two first.
Most recent customer reviews
The roomie says 4 or better, but these books are so not for the supposed young adult target age nor for older readers, at all, and this one is too much...Read more