Mighty Jack and the Goblin King (paperback)
by Ben Hatke
I really enjoyed Mighty Jack, but it left me hanging. Mighty Jack and the Goblin King is the second installation, and as far as I know, Hatke only has or plans to write these two. Jack and Lilley have gone into the garden to look for Jack’s sister, who was captured by a giant. When they get there, they discover a world with Goblins (who turn out to be good), Giants (who are bad), and these weird rat things that chew through the vines and pipes. Jack and Lilley are separated, but both face danger in search of Jack’s sister. They make allies and fight the bad guys, and have a final challenge at the end that will appeal to all of my female students. It doesn’t leave us hanging, but segues into another of Hatke’s series by introducing us to some of his other characters.
What I liked about this book was the girl power. Lilley took charge and was given an important job where she faced tough choices, but came out on top. Jack had to rely on Lilley’s quick thinking a few times, which is a nice change up from “the boy saves the girl.” However, there was the porch scene that was a nice surprise.
What I didn’t like about this book was the way is was crammed in. I felt like there was potential for other parts to be developed and explained, but overall, Hatke did a great job of writing an engaging graphic novel for my sixth grade readers. And their teacher.
Book 55 of 40
(Book 21 of 2018)