A pioneering new graphic novel series by Dav Pilkey, the author and illustrator of the internationally bestselling Dog Man and Captain Underpants series.
In Cat Kid Comic Club, Li'l Petey, Flippy, and Molly introduce twenty-one rambunctious, funny, and talented baby frogs to the art of comic making. As the story unwinds with mishaps and hilarity, readers get to see the progress, mistakes, and improvements that come with practice and persistence.
Squid Kid and Katydid, Baby Frog Squad, Monster Cheese Sandwich, and Birds Flowers Trees: A Haiku Photo Comic are just some of the mini-comics that are included as stories-within-the-story, each done in a different style, utilizing humor and drama, prose and poetry, illustrated in different media including acrylics, pastels, colored pencils, felt-tip markers, clay, hand-made cardboard sculptures, photographs, pipe cleaners, construction paper collages, and cookies.
Readers of all ages will be inspired to dream up their own stories and unleash their own creativity as they dive into this new graphic novel adventure from Dav Pilkey and his heartfelt, humorous, and amazing cast of characters in the Cat Kid Comic Club.
Crime takes a back seat to craft in Cat Kid's series debut. Cat Kid, aka Li'l Petey, steps out of his Dog Man sidekick role as president of the titular comic club, with psychokinetic tadpole Molly as vice-president, her 21 baby-frog siblings as members, and their dad, Flippy the fish, as anxious arbiter of literary excellence. Readers new to the Pilkeyverse will be won over by its genial looniness as Li'l Petey works valiantly to teach his club members how to make comics. When Melvin's first effort, Dennis the Toothbrush Who Wanted To Be a Dinosaur Lawyer, is judged "dumb" (it is a tad thin on plot), Li'l Petey and Molly encourage all the froglets to get over their fears by failing utterly: "Worst comic gets a prize!" yells Molly. Flippy wrings his bionic claws at the results, pronouncing them "violent," "disgusting," and "offensive"; The Cute, Little Fluffy Cloud of Death has Flippy calling in the medical authorities. Fortunately, Nurse Lady talks some sense into him ("Look at Shakespeare: It's all DEATH and VIOLENCE and FART JOKES!...Take a chill pill, dude"), and the club continues, producing a legal drama, a startlingly beautiful sequence of nature photos and haiku, and sneak peeks at a buddy story, a biography, an apocalyptic thriller, and a superhero adventure. Few are "wholesome," but all are believably childlike. Pilkey effectively mixes instruction and empowerment into the chaos, the frenetic panels (with Garibaldi contributing colors) making both immensely enjoyable. Supa fun. (Graphic fiction. 8-12) Copyright Kirkus 2020 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.
PW Annex Reviews
Dog Man sidekick Li'l Petey and tadpole Molly are running a weeklong comics workshop for 21 quarrelsome froggies while the frogs' father, bionic fish Flippy, tries to enforce decorum. (Flippy admonishes the kids, "There is NOTHING funny about POO-POO!!!"—to which they reply only with laughter.) As the froggies wrestle and eventually conquer their stymied or fearful imaginations, readers are treated to the wonderful variety of their work through brief mini-comics, from pencil drawings reminiscent of the Captain Underpants series to photocomics made with broken, hybridized action figures, all with classic Pilkey titles such as Supa Fail and The Cute, Little, Fluffy Cloud of Death. Amid this riotous creativity (awards are given for the craziest, grossest and "Most Violentest" comic), there's a lesson for Flippy, too: "be more chill," and don't play thought police. As wise Nurse Lady reminds him, "Look at Shakespeare: It's all death and violence and fart jokes!" Irreverent, laugh-out-loud funny and—gosh darn it—downright moving, it's a heartfelt celebration of coming into one's own as an artist, with all its frustrations and joys. Ages 7–up. (Dec.)
Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly Annex.