Masterpiece Adventures: The Marvin & James Series

Book review by Carrie Kingsley, Common Sense Media
Masterpiece Adventures: The Marvin & James Series Poster Image

Common Sense says

age 6+

A beetle and a boy share a friendship in sweet stories.

Parents say

age 6+

Based on 2 reviews

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Community Reviews

age 6+

Sweet Book about the friendship between a Boy and a Beetle

James is going on vacation and Marvin has to entertain himself until his friend returns. A simple, sweet book that will delight young children.
age 6+

Some good parts, some not so good

I really wanted to like this book overall because there are parts of it that are good. A strength of the book is that the two boy characters (a human and a beetle) are so sweet and tender with and toward each other. I also appreciated the exploration of complicated feelings that come up when Marvin goes on vacation and leaves James behind. The tiny world and adventures of the beetles is also fun. The reason I'm giving this just two stars is because the one girl character plays only a secondary role (despite being present for most of the story) and is portrayed as whiny, obnoxious, emotional, and more of a hindrance than a partner in problem solving when the beetles find themselves in a bind. Disappointing that this book plays into some old, tired tropes and gender stereotypes so prevalent in children's literature. I ended up returning it and looking for something that doesn't perpetuate those stereotypes.

Book Details

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