- Paperback: 336 pages
- Publisher: Amulet Paperbacks; Reprint edition (April 1, 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1419701851
- ISBN-13: 978-1419701856
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 20 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #575,137 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Sidekicks Paperback – April 1, 2012
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About the Author
Jack D. Ferraiolo is the author of The Big Splash and Sidekicks. As the head of development at a children’s animation production company, he has developed and writes for WordGirl on PBS, for which he won an Emmy Award. He lives in northern Massachusetts. Visit him online at www.jackferraiolo.com.
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One thing I wasn't prepared for by reading the reviews here is that the book is told in first person, present tense format. This was a bit of a jarring departure from the standard 3rd person, past tense style. First person is uncommon and first person, present tense is even more uncommon because it is so difficult to do well. Ferraiolo handles this about as well as can be expected and the overall effect works due to his clean prose and snappy dialogue. I've put off purchasing Confessions of a D-List Supervillain because it uses the same writing style but now I think I'll give it a chance - hopefully that author will handle it as well as Ferraiolo.
About the only complaint I have with the book (besides it was over too quickly) is that ending felt a bit rushed and that an awfully lot of things were revealed without preparation in a very short time frame. Or maybe they were set up and I just missed the clues. Anyway, I'm hoping that there is a sequel in the works that will chronicle the further adventures of a particular Dynamic Duo.
Scott/Bright Boy has reached the Age of Awareness. Though he's been a sidekick for seven years, he's just now into puberty. And, well, his uniform tights...they are TIGHT! One night, his rescue of a pretty woman leads to (gasp!) an erection--one that is captured on live TV and broadcast all over the news networks.
Remember, how boners in class are a big problem for normal boys? Well, poor Scott has to suffer in silence as all his classmates snicker about the Big Deal and the newscasters cracking tasteless jokes about his "rising" to the occasion. Even Trent (Phantom Menace) is giving him a side-eye, thinking he's a perv and telling him he better settle all that down right quick. Scott's rage and embarrassment knows no bounds, and when he's taunted by Monkeywrench at a meet-up, well, Bright Boy loses his ever-lovin' cool. He attacks, and the results? Romantic.
Okay, not at first, but Monkeywrench, sidekick to Dr. Chaotic (Phantom Justice's nemesis), is more than meets the eye. She, well, is gorgeous, and intelligent, and interacting with her teaches Scott that "good" is a label that is truly subjective. Especially when Bright Boy gets a handle on what EXACTLY Phantom Justice stands for.
I'm not going to ruin this one--at all--because, it is a fantastic book. It takes all the superhero tropes and twists them. I loved Scott's complete naivete. And Monkeywrench, aka Allison, is frankly a great accessory character. There is a love story here, and it's not forced. Scott has never really connected with his peers, and Allison is the first person he can be honest with regarding his life, and his dreams. And, she's tender to him in a way he absolutely needs. Plus, Scott/Bright Boy is just such a great kid. He is so pure of purpose, so incredibly self-less, and yet a bit sulky regarding his own personal life, teen/tween readers will find him easy to connect with.
Bright Boy is the sidekick to Phantom Justice. Supervillain Dr. Chaotic has escaped from prison. Now Phantom Justice and Bright Boy must face off against Dr. Chaotic's and his sidekick Monkeywrench again. After the sidekicks accidentally discover each others identities, Scott begins to second guess his secret identity and hate his inappropriate outfit even more.
From the beginning Ferraiolo pokes fun at the superhero world, with the cliched saving of a beautiful female hostage. Phantom Justice takes himself a little too serious. The hero/villain scripted banter is hilarious. Scott is a great character and the perfect guide into this superhero world. I expected the action and humor, both were great. Scott having a love interest was a pleasant surprise.
I loved the author's first book, Big Splash and was really looking forward to Sidekicks. I was not disappointed, this was so much fun and very well done. Ferraiolo simply brings it every time. There aren't that many tween or YA novels featuring a male protagonist with a romance storyline and the author pulls it off with ease. It's simply another layer in this well told and very funny story.