From School Library Journal
Gr 5–8—Every child dreams of having superpowers and the good they can do with them. The Offenders tackles this idea while taking on the popular topic of bullying. An accident gives five bullies superpowers. Instead of invisibility or the ability to fly, they are given the traits of the kids they torment. When aliens attack the school and threaten the safety of the world, it's up to The Offenders to draw upon their unique abilities to save humanity. Many kids will be turned off by the book's blatantly overt message about bullying (statistics from awareness websites are interspersed throughout) and lengthy explanations of everyday activities come off as didactic. Back matter includes information already known to a wide variety of children including several slang and texting indexes, brief Spanish and Korean glossaries, as well as a custard recipe briefly mentioned in the text. Even though a multiethnic cast of characters will appeal to those serving diverse populations, The Offenders is an uneven addition to an already glutted field of antibullying titles. Black-and-white cartoon-style drawings fit the superhero theme. This is a below-average book tackling issues deftly handled by previous works, such as Eric Kahn Gale's The Bully Book (HarperCollins, 2013) and Lisa Yee's Warp Speed (Scholastic, 2011).—Christopher Lassen, Brooklyn Public Library
About the Author
I am the creator of Mama's Boyz, an award-winning comic strip that has been distributed by King Features Syndicate to close to 900 publications since 1995. I've illustrated and / or written more than a dozen children's and middle-grade books including: Mama's Boyz: The Big Picture; Khalil's Way; Hillary's Big Business Adventure; Looking to the Clouds for Daddy; Please Don't Yell at We; My Hair is Curly; Please Won't You Listen to Me?; A is for Anacostia; My Surgery; Just Because; What's Below Your Tummy Tum? and the Amazon Best-Selling Who Would Have Thunk It! I'm currently illustrating a book for Scholastic.This is by far, my longest book, a whopping 228 pages! And the fact that I wrote it with my two teenage sons makes it even more special. Writing this book is especially surprising for someone like me who never thought I could write that much. Plus as a kid, I really didn't like to read, either, so it's funny that I've become an author. But, as I got older, I realized how important it is for people to have stories that they can enjoy, and characters that they can relate to. That's why I do what I do. For more information on my books, upcoming projects, or to book me for school visits, or Skype, feel free to email me at email@example.com or visit me on the web at www.jerrycraft.net Or you can write even if you just want to talk about the book. Thanks a bunch!!!