Parents' Guide to

Elvis and the Underdogs: Secrets, Secret Service, and Room Service

By Mary Eisenhart, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

Frail boy and huge talking dog reunite in D.C. adventure.

Book Jenny Lee Friendship 2014
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As with Book 1, ELVIS AND THE UNDERDOGS: SECRETS, SECRET SERVICE, AND ROOM SERVICE is lighthearted, fanciful, and a bit over the top. It's also poignant and heartfelt as Benji pines for Elvis, and each of the kids grapples with his or her own challenges: Taisy worries about the next sports contest she's expected to ace, "human computer" Alexander explains why he thinks it's unethical for him to enter a spelling bee, and sickly Benji hopes the next adventure doesn't land him in the emergency room -- again.

Author Jenny Lee, a sitcom writer and producer ​(of Disney series Shake It Up), effectively delivers the tale in Benji's voice, and Kelly Light's fun illustrations will entertain young readers, even reluctant ones. Parents looking for books with ethnically diverse characters also​ may appreciate that Alexander is Korean-Jewish while Taisy's parents, both star athletes, are African-American and Swedish.

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