Legends of Zita the Spacegirl

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Legends of Zita the Spacegirl
Author(s)
Publisher
Age Range
8+
Release Date
September 04, 2012
ISBN
978-1596434479
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Ben Hatke brings back our intrepid space heroine for another delightful sci-fi/fantasy adventure. Zita is determined to find her way home to earth, following the events of the first book. But things are never simple, and certainly never easy, in space.

Zita's exploits from her first adventure have made her an intergalactic megastar! But she's about to find out that fame doesn't come without a price. And who can you trust when your true self is being eclipsed by your public persona, and you've got a robot doppelganger wreaking havoc . . . while wearing your face?

Still, if anyone can find their way through this intractible mess of mistaken identity and alien invaders, it's the indomitable Zita, in Legends of Zita the Spacegirl.

Editor reviews

2 reviews
Zounds! It's Zita!
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
5.0
Zita, plucky intergalactic adventurer and deep-space heroine, is back, but the alien paparazzi are getting to her. Constantly surrounded by admirers, she longs to return to Earth, or maybe just for a bit of peace and quiet to wander around by herself.

A lonely, discarded android, capable of taking on any shape or form, observes Zita's popularity, and longs for the warmth of affection that everyone seems to offer Zita. So she transforms herself into Zita, and usurps our heroine's place, zooming off into the beyond and leaving the real Zita stranded. Mind you, all of that is conveyed in the artwork, since this little android doesn't really speak. It astonishes me how much emotion Ben Hatke can suggest on the immobile face of a mechanical creature. The art is appealing and gentle, but never silly or simple.

Zita, naturally, gives chase, and in the process gathers another posse of quirky space-wanderers, both mechanical and biological. I appreciate that this universe has such a rich variety of beings inhabiting it, and many of them not humanoid. The subtle subplots also add depth to the story, a sense that this is a universe simply bursting with stories, and we just happen to be tuning into Zita’s.

That’s important, though. Zita is a human girl, however brave and intrepid she is. And like any girl lost in the wilderness, what she wants above all is to go home, to find her planet and her parents. That’s something any reader can identify with, even if she hasn’t ridden on mouseback or piloted a living ship.

As the final panel is “To be continued…” there’s clearly another Zita adventure to come! Yay! In the meantime, I think I’ll reread these first two volumes, and so should you.
Good Points
Graphic novel with all-ages appeal
Wonderful main characters
Pleasing future/alien mix of robot and animal characters
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Zita's Back!
Overall rating
 
4.5
Plot/Characters/Writing Style
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
5.0
Zita has discovered that intergalactic fame isn’t all she thought. Hounded day and night, she is relieved when she meets her exact clone. What could it hurt to send the clone out to pretend to be her while she plays? Unfortunately, the clone volunteers to save the Lumonians’ planet and in return they will send her home to Earth. When Zita steals a spaceship to chase her down, she begins her next great adventure.

Author Ben Hatke has a gift for creating action-packed scenes. You’ve got to love villains that are heart-shaped planets! The aliens are always interesting and Hatke’s sketches and guidebook entries about them show that he has carefully considered how they fit into Zita’s universe. The illustrations are gorgeous, particularly the silent shots of the spacecraft hurtling through the stars. The most powerful drawings have no dialogue but convey so much.

Zita and her clone learn about heroism and sacrifice, setting the series up for a third installment. Zita the Spacegirl was the book I was rooting for when judging the Cybils and I plan on nominating Legends of Zita the Spacegirl this year. I’m looking forward to seeing where in the universe she goes next.
Good Points
Gorgeous illustrations
A cool, strong heroine
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