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Review: Stinky Cecil in Terrarium Terror!

About a year and a half ago, I had the pleasure of reading the first Stinky Cecil book. At the time, I decided to read the book to my son, then in pre-K, who loved the story and would often ask me when the next part was coming out. Over time he asked me about the book less and less. So when he saw the book on my desk, I was surprised at his excited reaction. “Is this the new one?!” he asked. We immediately sat down to read the book together. (Now he is in first grade, he can read too!)

Stinky Cecil in Terrarium Terror!stinky Cecil 2
By Paige Braddock.
amp! Comics for Kids. January 2016. ISBN 9781449471866
PBK, $9.99. 125pp.
Grades 2 and up

When we last left off, Stinky Cecil and his friends had just saved their pond—but one of their friends was stuck in a bottle. The story opens with the friends banding together to help Sprout out of the bottle. Soon after the rescue, Cecil is grabbed by youngsters on a class trip and placed in the class terrarium.

Cecil is afraid at first, but he soon discovers that life in a controlled environment isn’t all that bad. He has new friends, food delivered at scheduled times, and a pleasant place to live. But his friends are worried and set out after him, running into lots of danger along the way.

While this isn’t as clever as the first volume, readers will enjoy the antics of all the different characters in this story. There’s plenty of humor, and Braddock continues to cleverly weave science tidbits into the story, so young readers won’t catch on to the fact that they’re learning something along the way.

The artwork is brightly colored and very simple. The large panels with the perfect amount of detail makes this a great read for young readers. Young readers will truly devour this adventure and hope there will be more to come. Bonus points for the science.

As for my son… he loved the title. He had plenty of questions along the way, hoping to get a better grasp of some of the science aspects of the story. He gave the book 5 stars.

This review is based on a complimentary copy supplied by the publisher. All images copyright © amp! Comics for Kids.

Esther Keller About Esther Keller

Esther Keller is the librarian at JHS 278, Marine Park in Brooklyn, NY. There she started the library's first graphic novel collection and strongly advocated for using comics in the classroom. Her collection is also the model for all middle school libraries in NYC. She started her career at the Brooklyn Public Library, and later jumped ship to the school system so she could have summer vacation and a job that would align with a growing family's schedule. On the side, she is a mother of 4 and regularly reviews for SLJ and School Library Connection (formerly LMC). In her past life, she served on the Great Graphic Novels for Teens Committee where she solidified her love and dedication to comics.

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