Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Whip Cracking Wednesday

Flight Explorer Volume 1, Villard, 2008

I really want to like this book. I am always on the hunt for interesting and original graphic novels that would work well in elementary school libraries It looks wonderful with full color panels and original stories. There are four volumes which is a real plus, gotta love a series.

I like the short story format. After years of playing Mario Brothers, I enjoyed "Copper: Mushroom Crossing" by Kazu Kibuishi. "Fish N Chips" is the story of a superhero goldfish in a bowl who saves the planet from a collision with an asteroid.

I was ready to give it gold stars for an elementary library when Missle Mouse, the space faring hero from the cover, yelled, "Holy Crap!" Now to be fair he was battling a killer satellite and later a mechanical octopus-like creature, and, on the list of obscene and untoward swear words, it is fairly tame. Graphic novels do use vivid language. Still, it seemed out of place and incongruous coming from a cute little space mouse with a blaster.

Honestly, I am NOT finicky about "language" in children's and YA books. Most of the time I do not even notice it or care because it fits into the story line.

I was asked once about the "language" in Mike Lupica's Travel Team and I had to scratch my head. I did not remember any strong, moderate, or even mildly provocative language. I did recall a compelling story with some unforgettable characters.

Which brings me to "Missle Mouse: the Guardian Prophecy." D' Arvit! This is science fiction/fantasy. Why the frak wouldn't Jake Parker use some kind of creative blasphemy instead of a mundane vulgarity? As FireflyWiki.Org so eloquently puts it, "Da-shiong bao-jah-shr duh la doo-tze!" " Ai ya! "

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