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Author: Puller, J. S.
Janey, a quiet outsider, is inspired by the eccentric and enigmatic Captain Superlative, a masked superhero who runs through the halls of their middle school, performing radical acts of kindness.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 4.40
Points: 8.0 Quiz: 198759
Kirkus Reviews (05/01/18)
School Library Journal (05/01/18)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 05/01/2018 Gr 4–7—Seventh-grader Janey likes being invisible: if you can't be seen, you can't be a target. Classmate Paige is in queen bee Dagmar's bullying crosshairs—at least, until the day Captain Superlative appears to show everyone a better way: "Be nice! Help others! Stand up!" Janey has to wonder if the girl with the mask and the blue hair is crazy. With a little sleuthing, Janey figures out the Captain's secret identity and is reluctantly convinced to accept the role of sidekick. Little does she know that she herself will end up being Captain Superlative's biggest accomplishment. Puller's debut novel opens with a prologue taking place at a memorial service, so it's no spoiler to reveal that the Captain's days are numbered, and her determination to go out leaving a legacy of small acts of kindness is more than just a way to avoid being forgotten. Although Janey's voice frequently wobbles, sounding more like an adult than a middle-schooler, and there is no way a student would be allowed to wear a cape and mask to a real-life middle school, the story is at its best when the Captain is standing up against meanness and pointing out that "different is good." VERDICT Buy where realistic fiction for tweens is in demand, especially where students are looking for Wonder readalikes with a similar "Choose Kind" message.—Elizabeth Friend, Wester Middle School, TX - Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 06/01/2018 In this two-hanky debut, seventh-graders get schooled in the value of kindness when a new student arrives dressed in cape, mask, and purple wig, sailing down the halls and grandly declaring it her mission to “make all troubles disappear!” Emotionally fragile, having lost her mother to cancer three years before, mousey Janey finds herself inexorably swept up in the Captain’s wake, designated a “sidekick,” and with increasing self-confidence, joining in the campaign—whether it involves simple acts like holding doors open for others and passing out calming mints before big tests, or escorting quiet classmate Paige between classes to shield her from the savage bullying of A-lister Dagmar. Though Janey only gradually discovers who the Captain is and how she finds the courage to engage in such “freaky” behavior, Puller gives readers strong hints from the outset by opening with a memorial ceremony and framing Janey’s narrative as a recollection. The author, like many first novelists, also positively packs in subplots. A worthy message delivered with heart, humor, and hardly any preaching. - Copyright 2018 Booklist.