|Image: Candlewick Press|
Middle Grade Monday features Timmy Failure: Mistakes were Made by Stephan Pastis. Our narrator, Timmy Failure runs a detective agency, Total Failure, which he hopes will soon become a Fortune500 company. The only problem is, he's a clueless, inept detective. His partner, a polar bear named Total, is only interested in garbage and not much help to Timmy. Still, he soldiers on. School is a nuisance. He has no use for Scantron tests, except to create dot-to-dot pictures, which of course, causes him to fail, much to the consternation of his group. His single mom is caring but trying hard to stay afloat financially and probably doesn't pay enough attention to Timmy. Then, there's the new boyfriend.
There's a lot of humor in this illustrated novel/ hybrid graphic novel, some of it is kind of sad. There's depth too, along with the hijinks. One might believe that Timmy's delusions are a sign of mental instability. I submit that they are a survival mechanism. Thank goodness for the humor! Just as I would melt with sympathy, Pastis lightened the mood. I haven't felt this much emotional whiplash since... Hm, since watching Charlie Chaplin movies.
Adding to the appeal, there's plenty of visual humor in the copious spot art, featuring round-eyed characters. Mistakes were Made was originally published in 2013. My library's copy hasn't been checked out in a while. Perhaps the Disney movie will re-ignite interest in the series. I hope so. Timmy Failure endears.
Thanks to Candlewick Press, I am hosting a giveaway. Comment on this review by Wednesday morning, April 1 and you're entered for a chance at winning a movie tie-in edition of Timmy Failure: Mistakes were Made!