Monday, April 9, 2012

Kevin's Point of View by Del Shannon

Genre:  YA Fantasy

Description (taken from Del Shannon's website):
Kevin Tobin is a relatively ordinary twelve-year-old dealing with the ­aftermath of his father’s death in a mountain biking accident near their home in Boulder, Colorado. To escape from his emotional turmoil, Kevin has ­developed his imagination into a dangerous foil and a powerful ally. While he antagonizes his mother and sister through his superhero antics on an average Wednesday ­morning, his ability to escape inside a character’s head becomes critical to his ­survival after his life is once-again turned upside down a year after his father’s death.

A mysterious package arrives in the mail, Kevin and his best friend are hunted down by a ruthless villain set upon world domination who is determined to ­retrieve the package, and after enlisting Kevin’s teenage sister and her pizza-­delivery boyfriend in a battle for control over time itself, the secret of Kevin’s whole existence is revealed to him by a source we never expected.

This book was too cute.  Even though it's set in the 'real-world', I'm labeling it as fantasy because it definitely has some fantasy aspects.  The book starts with a running start right into the story, and you get a feel for Kevin almost immediately.  He's just your typical almost-teenager boy who likes to torment his sister and mother.  And he also has an imagination he uses to escape from difficult situations.  And who can blame him?  I don't know what it feels like to lose a parent...

So what's in this book besides a lot of imagination?  Well, there's action and a lot of humor.  There were a lot of moments where I could empathize with Betsy, Kevin's older sister, because I had a younger brother who used to torment me in the same ways Kevin tormented Betsy.  But even through the adventure that weaves through this book, we see a lot of human emotions like grief, love, bravery, etc.  And as the story unfolds, we find out that pretty much everything you've been introduced to is connected one way or another.

Who would I recommend this book to?  Anyone looking for a change of pace.  If you're looking for a humorous story that'll touch your heart, then grab this one.  I'd definitely hand this one to my sister and brother (in the tween age) to read.

Quote from the book that I absolutely loved (parts removed are denoted with "..."):
       "Kevin?" his mother called from the living room.  "I'm going to the store to pick up a few groceries...  ...I'll be back in a few hours.  Do you want anything?"...
       ...He scowled as he yelled, "Wire cutters, three sticks of dynamite, glow-in-the-dark paint, a hard hat, and something you can put in coffee to make someone think all your homework answers are right."
       Mrs Tobin sighed.  "I'll just get you some granola bars."

          --Kevin's Point of View, pp. 49-50

Thanks goes to Del Shannon for providing me a review copy.

Challenges:  Young Adult Reading Challenge

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