Steve L. McEvil by Lucas Turnbloom

Steve L. McEvil by Lucas Turnbloom. RH Graphic, Crown Books, 2022. 9780593301432

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review): 3.5

Format: Hardcover graphic novel

What did you like about the book?  Steve is a budding super villain with a lot to live up to. His crazy grandfather is an evil genius par excellence: Tiberius McEvil, currently retired…or is he? Steve’s dad has been a big disappointment to his old man, opting for a life as a gentle and beleaguered cartoonist so Gramps wants Steve to get with the program. To start him off right, he gives Steve a deadly robot sidekick named Dorkas and encourages his grandson’s plans to take over his school. Steve wants to be evil, even recruiting 2 henchmen to do his bidding, but is smitten with Sierra Flores, a brainy girl with glasses. Complicating the situation is the arrival of a new neighbor, Vic Tory, who can’t stop himself from saving the day. As a weird collection of giant stolen rocks shows up in the town center, along with a suspicious new substitute teacher who’s an expert on physics, the three kids must join forces to save Earth. The colorful art and fast-moving plot make reading this book a breeze. The characters all have a strong visual presence: Steve with his never ending rounds of dopey eyeglasses, Grandpa with his weird comb over, and Professor Stinger, with his round body and yellow and black wardrobe. The McEvil family is White, Sierra cues as Latina, and Vic has dark skin and a giant black pompadour. This is the first in a planned series.

Anything you didn’t like about it? There’s lots of jokes about flatulence. For me, it felt over the top, but presumably the target audience won’t be bothered.

To whom would you recommend this book?  Fans of Dog Man, Big Nate, and Hilo will appreciate this new series

Who should buy this book? Elementary school and public libraries

Where would you shelve it? Graphic novels

Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? No

Reviewer: Susan Harari, Keefe Library, Boston Latin School, Boston, MA

Date of review: August 2, 2022, 2022

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