binky takes charge

Binky Takes Charge by Ashley Spires

Binky has now been promoted to lieutenant in first against the aliens.  It means that he is now in charge of training new recruits.  But his first recruit is definitely not what he had been expecting.  To start with, he isn’t a cat!  He’s a dog!  Binky sets out to train the new cadet anyway, trying to ignore the fact that he pees on the floor, won’t use the litter box, doesn’t respect the idea of a cat nap, and is unable to pounce a fake alien on a string. Soon Binky is questioning more than his cadet’s skills, perhaps he’s really a spy for the aliens!  Now Binky sets out to prove what he suspects, but he’s in for a few surprises along the way.

The Binky series is one of my favorite graphic novel series for children.  It is a treat to see our alien-fighting (actually insect fighting) hero reach new ranks here.  The addition of a dog into the series is brilliant, especially one who may be a spy for the flies.  Add in the farting and the physical humor, and you have a series that is bound to appeal to reluctant readers as well as eager readers.

Spires’ art is done in a limited color palette.  Her black and white cat lives in a sepia-toned world that has bursts of color.  This palette could read as vintage, but here the modern lines and modern story keep it up-to-date and great fun.

This is another strong book in a great series.  It’s a must-have for all children’s graphic novel collections.  Appropriate for ages 5-8.

Reviewed from copy received from Kids Can Press.