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Beast & Crown by Joel Ross
Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk
Boundless by Jillian Tamaki
Carrying Albert Home by Homer Hickam
CatStronauts: Space Station Situation by Drew Brockington
Demon, Volume 4 by Jason Shiga
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14 Hollow Road by Jenn Bishop
From Ant to Eagle by Alex Lyttle
The Great Shelby Holmes Meets Her Match by Elizabeth Eulberg
Hear the Wolves by Victoria Scott
Lights, Camera, Middle School! by Jennifer L. Holm
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Murder on the Half Shelf by Lorna Barrett
One Last Word: Wisdom from the Harlem Renaissance by Nikki Grimes
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Orphan Island by Laurel Snyder
Paper Girls Volume 3 by Brian K. Vaughan
Piecing Me Together by Renée Watson
Red Leech by Andrew Lane
Refugee by Alan Gratz
Ripped From the Pages by Kate Carlisle
The Scarebird by Sid Fleischman and Peter Sís
See You in the Cosmos by Jack Cheng
Walking with Miss Millie by Tamara Bundy
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Portfolio 25 by Rosamund Kidman Cox

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2017 books read and reviewed
Back Half round-up: Favorite books read and reviewed from July-December 2017 Canadian Books reviewed in 2017
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It's Monday, What Are You Reading (December 11)
It's Monday, What Are You Reading (December 18)
It's Monday, What Are You Reading (December 25)
Mysteries reviewed in 2017
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Lights, Camera, Middle School!: 12/24/17

Lights, Camera, Middle School! by Jennifer L. Holm

Lights, Camera, Middle School! by Jennifer L. Holm is a prose and graphic novel hybrid for middle graders who grew up reading the comic books. Babymouse is in middle school and she needs to join a club. Given her overactive imagination it's no surprise that she ends up in the movie club. What is surprising is that she's given the role of writer and director — and she succeeds at it.

There's a maturity to Babymouse that isn't always present in the comic books. Many of the comics are based around situational humor with Babymouse being the fall guy for most of what goes wrong. She's styled as a hot pink mouse version of Buster Keaton. Where he had his iconic half frown, she has her droopy whiskers. Unfortunately she often lacks the industriousness that Keaton's characters always had — no matter how down on their luck they seemed.

With a bit more maturity and insight, Babymouse has come to realize that much of her misfortune comes from her own self sabotage. With a little more focus and self confidence she's able to bring the movie club's project to fruition. She even manages to work with Felicia (the oft-times antagonist / bully of the comic books).

Thematically Lights, Camera, Middle School! reminds me of a Fall 2017 anime, Anime-Gataris especially near the middle of the series where the club sets out to make their own anime short and come into trouble with other clubs, budgets, and rules.

Four stars

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