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Bad Island


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About the Author

Doug TenNapel was raised in the town of Denair, California. In 1994, he created the popular Earthworm Jim. Doug's graphic novel GHOSTOPOLIS was a 2011 ALA Top Ten Great Graphic Novel for Teens, and his follow-up, BAD ISLAND, is a 2012 ALA Great Graphic Novels for Teens as well as one of School Library Journal's Top 10 Graphic Novels of 2011. Doug lives in Franklin, Tennessee.


Two very different dysfunctional families try to reconnect in an exciting alien adventure by TenNapel, graphic novelist and creator of Earthworm Jim. Long ago, in a distant part of the galaxy, a race of giant, machinelike people battle their enemies to keep the small inhabitants from being condemned to slavery, and a young prince is determined to prove his worth in battle. On modern Earth, teen football player Reese wants little to do with his family, and nothing to do with the family vacation. When a storm hits the family boat trip, Reese, his annoying younger sister, and his parents wash up on an island filled with bizarre, dangerous creatures. A mysterious consciousness on the island helps defend them-and as the family struggles to survive, they have the chance to heal not only their own broken relationships but also a family torn apart in that long-ago war. The stylized art suits the weirdness of the alien creatures, and the human faces are so expressive that TenNapel shows arcs of emotional journey without the characters having to say a word. Though geared toward young readers, the adventure features sympathetic adult characters as heroic as the children, and parents should enjoy the tale as well. Ages 10-13. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


"TenNapel's colorful illustrations are filled with energy and life."-School Library Journal, starred

"TenNapel is a terrific cartoonist and in fine form here."-Booklist

"TenNapel is an accomplished creator of graphic novels for kids, and this is sure to appeal to all those who love his most famous character, Earthworm Jim."-Publishers Weekly

Gr 5 Up-One glance at the cover depicting ominous clouds overhead and a landmass with a glaring red eye informs readers that the author of Ghostopolis (Scholastic, 2010) has created another exploration of the bizarre. Dad has decided to take Reese, who is too cool for family outings, and his sister, Janine, on a fishing trip. The vacation takes an unexpected turn when their boat capsizes during a storm and they find themselves marooned on a strange island. To their horror, the family slowly realizes that the island is the submerged body of a giant creature, escaped from another world. The story alternates between the shipwreck survivors and the faraway world that created this "island." Both stories feature conflict between an adolescent son and his father. Clever touches highlight the dawning pubescence of both son and monster: small whiskers sprouting on the giant monster, Reese's flippant response when his mother wonders about his ability to make her nervous. "No problem mom. It's a gift." Ultimately, both rebellious adolescents grow up and find their place as young men. The vibrant color palette used in the family's story contrasts with the grays and browns of the monster world. Both places are punctuated with red, yellow, and black to emphasize the scenes of conflict, while silhouettes add a striking visual touch. Expressive wide-eyed faces perfectly capture emotions while the effective use of humor (a dead pet snake plays an important role) keeps the tension from becoming overwhelming. TenNapel has crafted another rip-roaring adventure with wide audience appeal.-Barbara M. Moon, Suffolk Cooperative Library System, Bellport, NY (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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