A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
A little emotional growth when it comes to navigating the complexities of friendship, but not a lot of academic content.
It can be challenging to fit in at a new school in a new town. There's value in persevering and being yourself.
Positive Role Models
Klawde is a maniacal warlord bent on dominating the universe (after a nap), but learns not to be a dismissive killing machine. He's loyal and fierce, and he knows his way around a pile of electronics. Raj and his family are good, kind people who try to do what's right.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that the Klawde: Evil Alien Warlord Cat series by Johnny Marciano and Emily Chenoweth hits the sweet spot for young readers who have ever felt out of place and wanted a tough-as-nails sidekick to help them not feel vulnerable. Klawde might not be the kind of warm, tenderhearted cat who snuggles up to show his appreciation, but he's loyal and fierce, and he knows his way around a pile of electronics. These books aren't a quick read -- the shifting between narrators takes some concentration -- but they're fun and feisty and filled with fantasy. The first two books, Klawde: Evil Alien Warlord Cat and Enemies, came out in February 2019. The third, The Spacedog Cometh, comes out Oct. 8, 2019.
Is It Any Good?
This series about a talking cat who's trying to get back to his home planet is a fun, fresh way to look at kid troubles like anger management and feeling out of place. It isn't easy navigating intergalactic friendships between species, but somehow Raj's kind, quiet nature is the perfect foil for his alien cat's over-the-top aggression. The writing in the Klawde: Evil Alien Warlord Cat series is a bit dense, and readers need to focus to follow the narration jumps between the cat from Lyttyrboks and the kid from Brooklyn. The wordplay is lovely, though, and it's worth sounding out Klawde's odd spellings to find hidden jokes.
Raj's interactions with the kids in his new town seem a little unrealistic (most parents wouldn't send their kid to a survival camp alone when he's already feeling vulnerable in their new town), but when the premise is a cat who builds teleporters from memory, it's best not to question the reality and to just sit back and enjoy a funny, engaging read.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.