Roar of the Beast (Cardboard Kingdom #2)

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Roar of the Beast (Cardboard Kingdom #2)
Author(s)
Age Range
9+
Release Date
June 01, 2021
ISBN
? 978-0593125540
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Vijay, the Beast, renounces his title after being bullied by neighborhood teenagers. No one--not his big sister Shikha or his friends--can seem to draw him back out of his shell.

That very night is when it starts. At first, no one believes Nate, who breaks his leg trying to pursue what he saw from his bedroom window. But then there's another, and another. An unknown monster has been spotted roaming the Kingdom after dark. It's ghastly, it's quick, and it might even have giant tentacles. Or claws. Or wings. Okay, there might be some varied testimonies on what exactly this monster looks like.

Forget Halloween--the newly minted Monster Mashers will go to any lengths to protect the Kingdom and uncover this mystery. But how did the monster get here? What does it want? And mostly importantly, who is behind its creation?

The Cardboard Kingdom: Roar of the Beast was created, organized, and drawn by Chad Sell with writing from nine other authors: Jay Fuller, David DeMeo, Katie Schenkel, Molly Muldoon, Vid Alliger, Manuel Betancourt, Michael Cole, Cloud Jacobs, and Barbara Perez Marquez.

Editor review

1 review
Cardboard and Halloween Costumes
Overall rating
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
4.0
As Halloween approached, the Cardboard Kingdom characters are getting ready, but there are problems. Elijah is worried that his stepbrother doesn't want as much to do with him, Alice is generally secretive and the costume plans, and Miguel is still trying to understand his feelings for Nate. Vijay, whose role is the Beast, is bullied by older teenagers, who make fun of his mask,and even though his sister Shikha confronts them, they still pop up and give the group problems. When Nate breaks his leg going after what appears to be a monster in the neighborhood, the group is on high alert. They form watches at night and worry that the monster will bring trouble to the neighborhood on Halloween. When they find out who is controlling the monster, will they be able to do anything about it?
Good Points
The best part of these books is the variety of characters. From Alice (who is always wandering aroudn with an evil plan saying "Bwa ha ha ha ha") to frightened Elijah to take charge Shikhas, the members of the Monster Mashers are well developed, and we get glimpses into their family life. My favorite is probably Animal Queen, who has a lot of power in the group, but whose parents don't want to let her go trick-or-treating.

The illustrations help the story a lot, and enables us to see what the children really look like in their costumes and also how they FEEL they look. Imaginative play is rather a lost art, and by middle school, tweens don't engage in quite as much of it. Even though there are some naysaying teenagers, it's good to see that there is a neighborhood group encouraging creativity in costuming, story writing, and general world building. How cool is it that there is a Dragon's Head Inn that serves refreshments out of a garage!

The color palette has a lot of purple and orange, which helps create the spooky feel of Halloween. There should be more middle grade books involving this holiday-- it's huge in the tween world because of the freedom that children are allowed to roam the neighborhood at night, costumes that allow children to take on other identities, and most importantly... candy!

Roar of the Beast is a good addition to imaginative graphic novels like Moyer's Ham Helsing: Vampire Hunter, Winnick's Hilo, and Graley's Donut the Destroyer.
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