Thursday, 31 January 2013

Eric Vale – Epic Fail

Eric Vale – Epic Fail by Michael Gerard Bauer, illustrations by Joe Bauer (Omnibus Books)
PB RRP $14.99
ISBN 978-1-86291-992-1
Reviewed by Jenny Heslop

Most kids dislike their nicknames, but Eric Vale has just been landed with a shocker. Due to a run of bad luck and inattention at school, all the kids begin calling him Epic Fail.

With help from his best friend Chewy, who doesn’t seem to mind his nickname (but then he has the annoying ability to look on the bright side of everything), Eric is determined to get rid of his new name. But to do this, he needs a win of epic proportions.

Secret Agent Derek ‘Danger’ Dale would be able to do this in a heartbeat. His ability to perform heroic deeds and escape the sticky situations is just what Eric needs. But unfortunately Agent Dale is a figment of Eric’s imagination, a comic created by Eric while escaping the realities of the classroom and his teachers.

The entertaining black and white illustrations bring the comic, Eric’s world and his imagination to life. They go hand in hand with the text creating many laugh-out-loud moments. His schemes for an ‘Epic Win’ are down to earth – he attempts to win the school project award, and to beat his nemesis at the swimming carnival. The believable nature of these activities makes his ‘Epic Fails’ easy to relate to and all the funnier.

Filled with pictures, large print, comics and light humour this book would mostly suit 8 – 10 year old boys.

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