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Monday, March 25, 2013

Into the Woods, by J. Torres and Faith Erin Hicks. Kids Can Press, 2012. $17.95 ages 6 and up

"I don't usually look like this.
You do look kind of funny
for a bear, eh?
But I'm not a bear. I'm a boy.
You look even funnier for
a boy.
I don't know what happened...
one minute I'm putting on this thing you know,
I'm this...this...
Bigfoot Boy?"

Rufus lives in the city and is unsure about the woods that back onto his Grammy's house. His mother tells him there is magic there! He isn't too concerned. Left with Grammy while his parents are away for a few days, it doesn't take long until Rufus tires of soap operas and drinking prune juice. Perhaps a jaunt into the woods will stave off dying of boredom.

In the woods he meets Penny, who in none too friendly. When Rufus meets Aurora, Penny's older sister, she assures him that Penny is worth pursuing as a friend. He heads back into the woods and notices a necklace hanging on a tree. Reading the words on the back of it causes an inhuman transformation. Rufus turns into Bigfoot Boy!

In keeping with his physical traits, he has red hair. But, he is also hairy and BIG! Oh, and he can talk to animals. He gets friendly with Sidney the flying squirrel who helps him find his way home. There is further danger in the forest. Penny disappears and with help, Rufus uses the necklace to rescue her.

Kids will love this graphic novel...especially the magic, the fun in the relationships and a bit of a scare. What's not to love about that? The text is written in dialogue speech bubbles which make the reading accessible and enjoyable for the target audience. Full of action, a new relationship and a hint that there may be a future for Bigfoot Boy, I think there will many fans ready for his next adventure.

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