Ninja Kid 2 - Flying Ninja by Anh Do
Scholastic, 2018. ISBN 9781742999579
(All ages) Highly Recommended. Nelson returns as the nerdy 'Flying Ninja' in this second instalment of the Ninja Kid, showing us it's more than OK to be different - it's beneficial.
When the evil Dr Kane takes over all the machines in Duck Creek, his grandmother and his side-kick, cousin Kenny, place all their faith in Nelson. In this Sci-Fi comedy, Nelson's efforts at protecting his class from rampaging machines and escaped Zoo animals are not appreciated at first - usually because of Charlie's vainglory in pinching the credit.
Living by the junkyard, with an inventor as a grandmother, Nelson's character draws more on fictional gadget heavyweights like Inspector Gadget, James Bond and Maxwell Smart, than on Ninja skills. This says more about the author's comedic background especially when his characters utter dialogue like, 'If that guy's a doctor, I'd like a second opinion.'
The bold words and phrases will delight children, especially when read aloud by teachers or parents. Jeremy Ley's black and white illustrations add visual provocation because Ninja Kid 2, is an amusing first chapter book, with uplifting messages about embracing our differences and mustering courage. Junior primary readers will smile repeatedly and broadly - what child could restrain themselves after poo lands on the teacher!