Author: Marcks, Ira
When a Hollywood film crew arrives on Martha's Vineyard with a mechanical shark and a youth film contest boasting a huge cash prize, disgraced pitcher Gayle "Blue Streak" Briar sees a chance to turn a bad season into the best summer ever. After recruiting aspiring cinematographer Elijah Jones and moody director Maddie Grey, Gayle and her crew set out to uncover the truth of the island's own phantom shark and win the prize money. In graphic novel format.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 2.90
Points: 2.0 Quiz: 512910
Kirkus Reviews (04/15/21)
School Library Journal (05/28/21)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 05/28/2021 Gr 4–7—Gayle and her single mother recently moved to Martha's Vineyard from Boston to open a boutique ice cream store. Gayle, a star pitcher for a local softball team, breaks her arm during the championship and loses the game. Reeling with guilt at losing the game and inadvertently forcing her mom to take an additional job to pay hospital bills, Gayle joins budding cinematographer Elijah and bullied teen Maddie to film a movie for a contest with a $3,000 prize. They meet the production crew on a big-budget shark movie that is filming on the island and discover a gruesome local legend based on a past tragedy. While this graphic novel is aimed at middle schoolers, it has a mature sensibility and an eerie "Goosebumps" vibe. Gayle, Maddie, and their families are white, and Elijah and his father are Black; characters are from various socioeconomic groups. Family ties are strong, and a queer romance is hinted at. Marcks has a distinctive art style, capturing characters in a cartoony, almost caricaturelike manner and conveying emotion well. His panels are small but easy to follow, with a soft purple hue that has narrative significance. VERDICT A bridge between simpler narratives and more mature content, this is a strong addition to graphic novel shelves, with appealing art and a strong story about friendship.—Nancy McKay, Byron P.L., IL - Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.