Bruce Gargoyle's Reviews > Kid Normal

Kid Normal by Greg James
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I received a copy of this title from the publisher via Netgalley.

Ten Second Synopsis:
After moving to a new town, Murph is accidentally enrolled in a secret school for superheroes after a misunderstanding between his mum and the Principal. Lucky for Murph, he's not the only misfit at the school and when disaster befalls the top brass, Murph and his friends must step into the breach to neutralise the problem.

What a fun read this was!  It felt like a cross between X-Men and Little Britain and was a refreshing change of pace from the books I've been reading lately.   Kid Normal is not the most original story in the world - untalented kid makes good being the order of the day in many middle grade reads - but it is certainly funny, pacey and tongue in cheek, with a likable protagonist, a band of lovable misfits and some truly ridiculous(ly evil) villains.  

Murph is a boy who has moved around a lot and when his mother finally discovers a school in which to enrol him in their new town, it is to Murph's chagrin that the school turns out to be a secret school for the super-powered.  Having said that, not all of the "powers" evident in the attendees could really be classed as "super", unless you count making a screeching noise with your teeth particularly super, so Murph, while the only one not endowed with a superpower, is not the only one struggling to fit in.

If you discount the superpower element, Kid Normal is a tried and true story of a young man who is lost and alone developing some solid, if unusual, friends and working together to overcome their difficulties.  In this case, the difficulty happens to be a giant wasp-human hybrid villain with a plan to take over the picnic world through the means of enslavement-inducing helmets, but apart from that, the story is one with which middle grade readers will be generally familiar.

The humour really is the driving force behind the story, with the book using a narrative style that invites the reader in and addresses them here and there.  The narrative style is fun and fast-paced and there were many moments that had me giggling along at the imagery produced.  Many of the adult characters are larger than life and readers won't be able to help having a laugh at their over the top antics.  We absolutely fell in love with Hilda, the girl whose power is to produce two tiny horses at will.  I mean, what a brilliant power! Who wouldn't want such an adorable skill at their disposal? 

While my copy didn't have any illustrations, the final edition of the book will be illustrated throughout, which will no doubt enhance the reading experience even more.

Kid Normal was a wonderful brain-break that celebrates the outsider, the kid who doesn't fit the mould, in a supremely humorous way.  There is enough action and mystery to keep young readers happy and I highly recommend this to readers who love a rollicking tale that uses super-charged laughs to drive the action-packed outcome.  
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Reading Progress

July 1, 2017 – Started Reading
July 3, 2017 – Shelved
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: action
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: adventure
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: annoying-characters
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: arc-reviews
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: body-parts
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: bullies
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: diversity
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: diverting-pasttimes
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: extraordinary-powers
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: family-dramas
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: friendship
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: humour
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: illustrated
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: kid-lit
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: librarians
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: middle-grade
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: middle-grade-fiction
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: mystery
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: parenting
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: personal-vices
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: rebellion
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: review-copy
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: robots
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: school-stories
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: sci-fi
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: secrets
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: sinister-games
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: subversive
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: superheroes
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: uk-fiction
July 3, 2017 – Shelved as: unusual-occuptions
July 3, 2017 – Finished Reading

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