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Mascot to the Rescue! Hardcover – 1 Oct 2008

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.3 out of 5 stars 3 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How cool is this book? 30 Mar. 2009
By Jesse Jackson - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Peter David is one of my favorite writers and he's given me another wonderful novel. The story of the boy who thinks his fate in intertwined with the fate of his favorite hero's mascot is charming, exciting and at the end very emotional. A great story that will be enjoyed by any fan of comics as well as adventure stories. I also want to compliment the lovely and talented Colleen Doran's great artwork. The art really helps to set the mood for the story.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not just a kiddie book 27 Dec. 2008
By rogueshadowcrawler - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Peter David is a legendary name in the comics business, so when I heard he'd written an actual novel that involved comics, I was very excited. He didn't disappoint, delighting me on every page.

The story is intriguing: many of us have seen a character in a film or a book or on TV and thought "Hey, he/she looks/acts like me!" But what would happen if our fate seemed to be tied to that character? What if it seemed like whatever happened to them happened to us? It's also superbly written and executed by a master of storytelling, and while the ending may be a tad predictable it's nevertheless good clean fun for those who enjoy a light-hearted story. Josh and Kelsey are endearing characters and the reader will probably be able to relate to both the sensible and compassionate Kelsey and the imaginative Josh.

This book is infinitely more enjoyable if you're a knowledgeable comic fan, or have even a passing idea of Jason Todd, Batman's second Robin. You see, Mascot is meant to be a (likable) caricature of Jason, who was so disliked by the fandom when he was around (in the mid 80's) that he was voted to be killed off, making him one of the few comic characters whose death is more famous than his life. There is also a bit in which Kelsey comments that "they [comic fans] are complaining about everything", which is definitely true in real life. To me, it seems as if Peter David actually wrote a commentary on the state of comics and comic fans nowadays (and, to an extent, the sate of modern society itself), and disguised it as a children's book. But it never feels heavy-handed or overdone - it's mixed in perfectly with the narrative. Finally, the creator of Captain Major is called Stan Kirby, an obvious shout out to Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, the creators of Spider-Man (among other iconic Marvel characterers). Josh's last name, Miller, may or may not be a tribute to Frank Miller, who wrote such legendary comic stories as The Dark Knight Returns and 300.

In conclusion: pick this book up if you're a fan of fun stories with a touch of the fantastic about them, and if you're a comic fan who can pick out the easter eggs, more power to you (no pun intended).
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Could Have Been Great, If Author Accepted That the Protagonist is Mentally Ill 12 July 2016
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I actually really liked the beginning of this book; the main character, Josh, is fascinating precisely because he's so messed up that he can't tell reality from fiction. It's not just that he believes that somehow he and the comic book character, Mascot, are connected; Mascot is bordering on a whole separate personality that he lapses into whenever he gets stressed. The problem, as the story goes on, is that the book refuses to accept how clearly dysfunctional Josh is. His delusions just wind up helping him over and over again, and the characters who think he needs help (a guidance counselor and a social worker) are villified for it. (Also, I don't think the author knows how social services actually work; I'm pretty sure they'd want to put him in therapy, not just take him away from his mother after a five-minute meeting.)

The other problem is...all of the other characters. There are a lot of POV characters, and none of them are nearly as interesting as Josh (though world-weary comic book creator "Stan Kirby" stands out among the others). The book also keeps trying to throw in extra subplots and morals. For example, Josh's friend's dad is a widower and was suicidally reckless after his wife died, until he got shot was became disabled. This is summarized in two pages and has little to do with anything else in the book. Josh's mom starts the story depressed and in denial about her son's problems, but then suddenly switches to a new personality so we can have her being sly and joking for her romance arc.

(That's another thing. Josh's mom has a romance arc with his friend's dad. But Josh also gets a romance arc with his friend. Neither really adds to the story, and they lead to a weird "happy ending" where we're supposed to imagine that Josh and his friend will wind up as stepsiblings who date?)

So anyway, this could have been a really interesting story about a protagonist who takes his obsession too far, and how fiction affects people in positive and negative ways. Instead, we get half a book where the protagonist is not quite living up to his potential, and another half that focuses on boring characters.
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