Saturday, August 2, 2014

The Misadventures of Salem Hyde: Big Birthday Bash (The Misadventures of Salem Hyde #2) by Frank Cammuso

This graphic novel series reminds me of getting up early Saturday morning to watch my favorite cartoons. Salem's lightning bolt pigtails and knack for losing control of her witchy spells while her snarky, mostly inefficient mentor Whammy tries to help her is full of puns and dry humor. I didn't laugh as hard as the first book but it's another whirlwind day in the life of Salem whose best friend is having a birthday party and didn't invite her. So she thinks. Shelly, her arch nemesis, never gave her the invitation. When at the party, Shelly starts to blab about it being boring, so Salem decides to blow things up physically. Or did she shrink everyone? When humongous insects attack things get iffy for the party goers. I marvel at Frank Cammuso's talent to pack his cartoons with energy, expressions, deadpan looks, slapstick comedy, and a whole lotta fun. Don't miss the brain freeze picture. Har-har. It hurt to look at it.

The books in this series are quick reads with usually two color illustrations. This one is pink and black. At the start Salem is learning a spell that she's having problems with and she blows herself up into a tall version of herself. I'm not talking about a stretch version or Shaq-sized Salem. I'm talking about a water tower-sized version of Salem. The drawings had me howling as she tries to hide and run home before her dad finds out she was messing with spells. Giantess Salem walking a bridge like a tight rope because her shoe doesn't fit, tongue hanging out as she concentrates on each narrow step. Then her father is in his car phoning home that he will be late because of a traffic jam and the reader sees a ginormous pink shoe blocking the road. Good stuff. Don't miss it.

4 Smileys

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