Review Detail

Don't try this at home!
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
4.0
Mile and Niles, pranksters extraordinaire, are back for their last year at their school. They start the year off right, with some mild shenanigans on the bus, and are somewhat surprised when Principal Barkin calls them into his office. For once, they are not in trouble; Barkin just wants their help in upping his own pranking skills, which he has been trying out, not very successfully, on the staff. This comes to a halt, however, when the superintendent of the school dies and the elder, former principal Barkin becomes the superintendent! Undeterred by the nimbus like bullying behavior of the youngest Barkin, Josh, Miles and Niles set out to pull as many amusing and sophisticated pranks as they can, including declaring a Bring Your Pet to School Day that is rather successful. Things can't always go on the way they have been, and the duo gets some bad news. Will the end of the school year mean the end of the Terrible Two?
Good Points
It is an all too common theme in middle grade literature to have the school principal be either a doofus or evil or both, and it was delightful to see Principal Barkin see the joy in pranking and seek advice from the best two practioneers of it! He had experienced some personal growth in the last book, but really comes in to his own here, even expressing admiration for the very first prank involving his hatch back. It would have been asking too much for Josh to also see the light, but my favorite part of this was Principal Barkin trying to come up with pranks that he could successful pull, and Miles and Niles instructing him on what "grace notes" to pranks would be!

The pictures capture the frenetic glee with which Miles and Niles go about their day, and add a depth to the characters. Superintendent Barkin's evil character is reinforced by the pictures of him in his striped suit, holding bolt cutters menancingly, and Miles and Niles friendship is shown in simple glimpses of them sitting under a tree or touching fingertips after a prank. There is even a light romance that is shown mainly through the pictures.

Yawnee Valley is a great town, and the descriptions of the local cows and small population are somewhat different than the typical middle grade novel setting. I'm not sure that any rural populations are going to be glad that their cows are painted with green and purple polka dots, but the tone of these novels is flippant and jovial enough to almost make me believe that they would find tourist opportunities to showcase these colorful animals.

Notebook novels are always a popular middle grade choice, and readers who have burned through Peirce's Big Nate, Berger's Lyttle Lies, Moore's King of the Bench series and Bergman and Scotts' Zits novelizations will enjoy reading about Miles and Niles exploits... and maybe even trying to recreate them!
Report this review Was this review helpful to you? 0 0

Comments

Already have an account? or Create an account
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Wings of Ebony (Wings of Ebony, #1)
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
In this riveting, keenly emotional debut fantasy, a Black teen...
You Say It First
 
3.3
 
0.0 (0)
One conversation can change everything. Meg has her entire...
My High School Royal Boyfriend
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
ALEX A tragedy at Langley Estate puts my family...
The Forgotten World (The World Apart Series Book 3)
 
5.0 (2)
 
0.0 (0)
Clark thought he knew what grief was. Addie thought...
Tales from the Hinterland
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A gorgeously illustrated collection of twelve “lush and deliciously...
Sisters of Shadow and Light
 
3.7
 
0.0 (0)
From the acclaimed author of Defy, Sara B. Larson,...
In the Penalty Box
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Willow Figure skating was supposed to be my whole...
Unchosen
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Katharyn Blair crafts a fiercely feminist fantasy with a horrifying...
Miracle Girl
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Leanne Strong hates June eighth even though it's supposed to...
The Memory Thief  (Thirteen Witches #1)
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Twelve-year-old Rosie Singer’s mom is missing whatever it is that...
Singled Out: The True Story of Glenn Burke
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
On October 2nd, 1977, Glenn Burke, outfielder for the Los...
The Elephant in the Room
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
It's been almost a year since Sila's mother traveled halfway...
Alone in the Woods
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Jocelyn and Alex have always been best friends...until they aren't....
Disaster Days
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Hannah Steele loves living on Pelling, a tiny island near...
Wild River
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Daniel Redmayne is fast asleep on the first night of...
The Last Hurrah
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
3 nights, 2 days, and 1 massive music fest ....

Latest Member Reviews

The Night Circus
 
4.3
"I couldn’t begin to express how much I adore this book. This book, magically, soothed my temper and let me..."
Wings of Ebony (Wings of Ebony, #1)
 
4.7
"WINGS OF EBONY is a beautifully crafted YA fantasy. A year has passed since Rue's life was irrevocably changed. Her..."
The Gilded Ones (Deathless #1)
 
4.3
"THE GILDED ONES by Namina Forna is a YA fantasy novel and the first book in the Deathless series. The..."
Unchosen
 
5.0
"UNCHOSEN is a fantastic and completely captivating YA apocalyptic fantasy, filled with feminism, friendship, sisterhood, and romance. Charlotte is the..."
In the Penalty Box
 
4.0
"IN THE PENALTY BOX is a cute YA contemporary hockey romance. Willow is a figure skater heading for the Olympics,..."
The Afterlife of the Party (Afterlife, #1)
 
4.7
"THE AFTERLIFE OF THE PARTY is a YA vampire book for anyone who doesn't want to make out with the..."
The Alcazar (The Cerulean, #2)
 
3.0
"THE ALCAZAR wraps up an intriguing YA fantasy duology. The book continues to follow four main characters in alternating points-of-view,..."
Super Fake Love Song
 
4.0
"Super Fake Love Song is about Sunny Dae, a Korean American teenager who is a mega-nerd trying to survive at..."
Hot British Boyfriend
 
4.3
"Ellie lives in Washington D.C. and attends an elite school, even though the tuition is a stretch for her single..."
The Cerulean
 
3.3
"THE CERULEAN is an intriguing start to a YA fantasy duology. The book begins with Sera, a Cerulean who has..."
Tales from the Hinterland
 
5.0
"TALES FROM THE HINTERLAND is an enchanting, haunting, and deliciously creepy collection of fairytales. Completely new and unlike anything I..."
You Owe Me a Murder
 
3.0
" *Connor is Deaf and has implants *Alex has light brown skin..."
Across the Green Grass Fields
 
4.7
"I love the Wayward Children series, and the latest installment, ACROSS THE GREEN GRASS FIELDS, is no exception. Here are..."
DEV1AT3
 
4.7
"Feedback What a difference between book 1 and book 2. I enjoyed this one so much more, and I..."
The Broken Raven (Shadow Skye, #2)
 
4.0
"THE BROKEN RAVEN is an intriguing YA fantasy that sweeps the reader away to a land of magic, plotting, and..."
You Have a Match
 
5.0
"YOU HAVE A MATCH is a beautifully written YA contemporary about family, summer, forgiveness, and best friend crushes. Abby is..."
The Ever After (The Omte Origins, #3)
 
3.7
"THE EVER AFTER is the final book in the YA fantasy Omte Origins series, and it goes out with a..."
The Quantum Weirdness of the Almost-Kiss
 
4.7
"THE QUANTUM WEIRDNESS OF THE ALMOST-KISS is a delightful YA STEM-themed romance. Evie and Caleb have been BFFs since they..."
Soul of Cinder (Heart of Thorns, #3)
 
4.0
"SOUL OF CINDER is an intriguing conclusion to a dark YA fantasy trilogy. While in the first book we witnessed..."
The Dark Matter of Mona Starr
 
3.3
"Mona Starr's best friend has moved away, and she can feel her 'matter,' what she calls her depression, swirling all..."