Monday, September 22, 2014

Review: Star Wars: Jedi Academy, Return of the Padawan (Book 2) by Jeffrey Brown


SUMMARY FROM NETGALLEY.COM:
Author/illustrator Jeffrey Brown returns in the highly anticipated sequel to the NY Times Bestseller Star Wars: Jedi Academy!
It's time to return to middle school in a galaxy far, far away. . . .
After surviving his first year at Jedi Academy, Roan Novachez thought his second year would be a breeze. He couldn't have been more wrong. Roan feels like he's drifting apart from his friends, and it's only made worse when Roan discovers he's not the amazing pilot he thought he'd be. When the school bullies take him under their wing, he decides they aren't so bad after all--or are they?
This year, Roan will have to face alien poetry tests, menacing robots, food fights, flight simulation class, online bullies, more lightsaber duels, and worst of all . . . a girl who is mad at him.
This incredible, original story captures all of the humor, awkwardness, fun, and frustrations of middle school--all told through one boy's comics, journal entries, letters, sketches, e-mails, and more.

MY TAKE:
I like most books that are written like a journal and this book is even better than most I've read.

In Star Wars: Jedi Academy, Return of the Padawan (Book 2), Roan starts his second year at Jedi Academy. He's eager to start pilot training but his teacher seems to have it in for him. To top it all off, his friends start acting strangely and his enemies treat him terribly. Can Roan make it through the school year?

The journal entries are handwritten, and so are the comics included. Both the handwriting and the comics are what you would expect from a young kid, albeit a talented cartoonist. Roan is quite funny, and it's really not hard to imagine him as a real boy going through what he does in the book. It's also easy to sympathize with him as he really does become more mature over the course of the book.

I liked the little extra things included like screenshots from Holobook (the school's version of Facebook), copies of pages from the school newspaper, report cards, etc. It breaks the monotony and helps give you a glimpse of life in the Jedi Academy.

Thanks to NetGalley and Scholastic Inc. for the e-ARC.

THE GOOD:

  1. The jokes are funny.
  2. The characters are interesting and Roan is easy to root for.
  3. It makes great use of the Star Wars universe.

THE BAD:

  1. Roan's handwriting is a little chicken-scratchy. 

READ IT IF:

  1. You or your child are Star Wars fans.
  2. Your child likes books like Diary of a Wimpy Kid.
  3. Your child is having trouble with his friends or with bullies.

RATING:
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