Review: Gum Girl! Chews Your Destiny by Rhode Montijo
Chews Your Destiny (Gum Girl! Book 1)
By Rhode Montijo
Disney · Hyperion Books
In Stores June 4, 2013
In the past few years, series like Frankie Pickle, Prince of Underwhere, Bad Kitty, and Dragonbreath helped pave the way for interesting text/illustration interactions in children’s literature. Add Chews Your Destiny to this list. Rhode Montijo brings appeal to spare with this first book in the Gum Girl! series. It’s part comic, part early chapter book, and ready to jump into readers’ hands in a single bound.
No more gum!
For nonstop chewer Gabby Gomez, these are earth-shattering words. They are delivered by Gabby’s mother after Gabby wakes with her head stuck to the pillow – the latest in a string of gum-related incidents. Gabby tries to listen, but she can’t resist – one little piece couldn’t hurt, right? When her subsequent massive bubble makes contact with a power line, she finds herself with sticky and streachy superpowers. Next stop, fighting crime on the way to school! But how will Gabby explain all this to her mother? The cliffhanger ending leaves the reader with these questions unresolved.
While there’s plenty of laughs and light action, everything isn’t fluffy. Gabby directly disobeys her mother on the path to gaining superpowers. While it might rub some adult readers the wrong way, this moral dilemma sets the story in motion and heightens interest in the relationship between Gabby and her mother.
The crisp black, white, and pink comic artwork is bold and expressive. Thick black outlines and stylized characters fit with the superhero nature of the story.
Funny, fast-paced, and entertaining, Chews Your Destiny is destined to be a popular pick. The biggest disappointment is that kids will have to wait until February 2014 to continue the adventure. Here’s hoping it doesn’t end anytime soon.
Digital review copy from Netgalley.
Filed under: Reviews
About Travis Jonker
Travis Jonker is an elementary school librarian in Michigan. He writes reviews (and the occasional article or two) for School Library Journal and is a member of the 2014 Caldecott committee. You can email Travis at firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow him on Twitter: @100scopenotes.
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