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Evan Kuhlman is the author of Brother from a Box, the critically acclaimed The Last Invisible Boy, Great Ball of Light, and the highly lauded novel for adults Wolf Boy. He lives in Ohio. Visit him at AuthorEvanKuhlman.Wordpress.com. J. P. Coovert attended the Center for Cartoon Studies. This is his first illustrated work for children. You can see more of his work at www.onepercentpress.com.
Gr 5-7-This illustrated novel, reminiscent in style of Jeff Kinney's Diary of a Wimpy Kid (Abrams, 2007), is sure to have huge appeal. Finn Garrett tells the tender yet humorous story of how he begins to disappear following his beloved dad's sudden death. The 12-year-old awakens the morning after the day when everything changes to find a strand of white hair and less "pinkness" to his skin. Each day he grows whiter and less visible. He begins to write a memoir, which is really an account of his and his family's grief over their devastating loss. While poignant and sad, the book is ultimately upbeat as they begin to heal. At times Finn feels he is being erased because he failed to save his dad. At other times he wonders if he is aging in order to get closer to him. He recounts memory after memory, ultimately realizing the importance of them, and of being the keeper of his father's stories. Finn sees a therapist, and eventually he, his mother, his grandpa, his little brother, and his friend Melanie move beyond their initial pain. Finn's invisibility reverses itself and he becomes a boy who has managed to hold on to the world. The book's engaging, intimate tone is enhanced by Finn frequently addressing readers. Stop signs placed at points when he is overwhelmed with feeling add to the tenderness. The language and style are pitch-perfect middle school, and the illustrations ably capture the boy's memories and moods.-Connie Tyrrell Burns, Mahoney Middle School, South Portland, ME Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
Were Jeff Kinney's Wimpy Kid to be suddenly bereaved, his next diary might approximate this painful but often funny novel, written by the author of the adult work Wolf Boy and illustrated by a debut graphic artist. Keeping a notebook, 12-year-old Finn Garrett explains in an early entry that a few months before, "a giant eraser fell from the sky and flattened me.... It's been erasing me from the world ever since." His father has died unexpectedly (in circumstances described only near the end), and Finn's black hair and pink complexion are gradually turning white (Coovert's cartoon shows a gray Finn looking into a mirror and seeing a vampire reflected back). As Finn remembers perfect moments with his father, avoids school as long as possible and compares his mother's and paternal grandfather's attitudes about death, he is made to see his pediatrician as well as a kindly school psychologist, who have their own theories about the "whiteness thing." Precise in his metaphors and his characterizations, Kuhlman delivers a study in coping with loss that middle-schoolers will want to absorb and empathize with. Ages 10-14. (Nov.) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
"If you're looking for a tender, redemptive story told by a fierce, fragile protagonist, meet Finn Garrett, the Last Invisible Boy. You'll love him." -- Susan Patron, author of the Newbery Medal-winning "The Higher Power of Lucky" ""The Last Invisible Boy" is at turns heartbreaking and uplifting...A gutsy book that will stay with me a long time." -- Jeff Kinney, author of "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" ""The Last Invisible Boy" may be written as a journal, but it's no blog. Protagonist Finn isn't writing for an audience -- he's writing to a friend. Sad, funny, and sincere." -- Hope Larson, Eisner Award-winning creator of "Chiggers" * "Precise in his metaphors and his characterizations, Kuhlman delivers a study in coping with loss that middle-schoolers will want to absorb and empathize with." -"Publishers Weekly", *STAR * "This illustrated novel, reminiscent in style of Jeff Kinney's "Diary of a Wimpy Kid", is sure to have huge appeal." -"SLJ", *STAR