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Pet Shop Heroes

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In a small pet shop near you live four animals with superpowers, but they can't be adopted. Grace the Guinea Pig, Carmine the Chameleon, Petruchio the Puppy, and Kitty the Cat have something else to do--they save the world! When an evil snake in a City near you tries to take over the world, the Pet Shop Heroes jump to action. Can they save the day? Pet Shop Heroes is intend In a small pet shop near you live four animals with superpowers, but they can't be adopted. Grace the Guinea Pig, Carmine the Chameleon, Petruchio the Puppy, and Kitty the Cat have something else to do--they save the world! When an evil snake in a City near you tries to take over the world, the Pet Shop Heroes jump to action. Can they save the day? Pet Shop Heroes is intended for children ages 4-8. Full of humor, adventure and superheroes, this title is perfect for any library or classroom.


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In a small pet shop near you live four animals with superpowers, but they can't be adopted. Grace the Guinea Pig, Carmine the Chameleon, Petruchio the Puppy, and Kitty the Cat have something else to do--they save the world! When an evil snake in a City near you tries to take over the world, the Pet Shop Heroes jump to action. Can they save the day? Pet Shop Heroes is intend In a small pet shop near you live four animals with superpowers, but they can't be adopted. Grace the Guinea Pig, Carmine the Chameleon, Petruchio the Puppy, and Kitty the Cat have something else to do--they save the world! When an evil snake in a City near you tries to take over the world, the Pet Shop Heroes jump to action. Can they save the day? Pet Shop Heroes is intended for children ages 4-8. Full of humor, adventure and superheroes, this title is perfect for any library or classroom.

33 review for Pet Shop Heroes

  1. 4 out of 5

    snowplum

    I've been on a bit of a kick lately, checking out all of the offerings from Bliss Books because they have such a unique, sweet, clever vibe to them. So far everything I've looked at has been marketed as a children's book, and my reviews try to strike a balance between evaluating whether a child of the target age range is really likely to enjoy the book, and whether adults might think these are especially enjoyable books to read to younger kids. This is the second book that I've read by Stanford I've been on a bit of a kick lately, checking out all of the offerings from Bliss Books because they have such a unique, sweet, clever vibe to them. So far everything I've looked at has been marketed as a children's book, and my reviews try to strike a balance between evaluating whether a child of the target age range is really likely to enjoy the book, and whether adults might think these are especially enjoyable books to read to younger kids. This is the second book that I've read by Stanford Crow (the other being Lazy Hero Cat, which I've reviewed here as well), and I will say I continue to be a little bit unsure how I'd describe the ideal audience for his work. Both books are quite short. They lack the detail and complexity in their plots to make the stories feel particularly engaging -- at least to me. Both books leave me feeling more like I read about the idea for a clever story than an idea that came fully to fruition. I admit that it is possible that this could be because these are really children's books as opposed to all-ages books, so I don't want to be an Uber Grinch about it if Crow is actually writing really excellent books for kids of a very specific age that I don't know very well... But my instinct is that these books -- Pet Shop Heroes in particular -- do wander through an odd twilight realm of unsatisfying depth for readers of many ages. The biggest problem is just feeling like there is SO little depth to provide any answer to the query "why?" when it might be asked by a young reader about this story. Why are the heroes heroes? Just cause they are! Why is the villain a villain? Just cause... he's a snake! Why do these characters get the particular superpowers they get? They just do. Admittedly I'm not expecting a massively epic and meaningful origin myth or a resonant tale of the heroes' childhood abandonment and bonding to make me feel like I know their hearts and would weep if they weep, rejoice when they celebrate. But. Give me something. Not only could the book and the audience clearly handle more than they get... they should get more than they get. Kids love to ask "Why?" and any great children's book author should be happily providing a multitude of answers, not an almost complete lack. This book is also a bit strange in that it breaks the fourth wall (sorry, I come from a theater background I don't know whether the term in literature is also 'fourth wall' or whether there is another word for unexpectedly addressing the audience) and occasionally addresses the reader as you, in a very literal and direct way. For example: "In a small pet shop on a street near you live four animals..." This happens early and late in the book, but then not at all for many of the middle chapters. This doesn't make the book Terrible, by any means, but I noticed it and wished it had been edited out. Which is a common thread here -- just feeling like an on-point editor could have raised a handful of similar points with the author that would have made the book a lot better with a minimum of fuss. The best things about this books are the ideas for characterization and the illustrations. The latter are by Christian Paniagua, who also illustrated Bruce Murphy's The Case of the Paranoid Panda, and whose work I singled out there, as well. Happily, Paniagua gets to show off a lot more in Pet Shop Heroes, and I would gladly have "read" this book just for the pictures. They manage to be charming when they need to be, funny when they ought to be, pretty when they want to be, and they demonstrate a real sensitivity to the content and tone of the book as a whole. There are a couple of details like Grace making a little wire sculpture of a turtle (using her Super Strength) for Mud the turtle that really delighted me. I know as a kid, I especially loved the feeling that if I spent a long time looking at the illustrations in a book, I would discover more about them well past the first cursory glances, and I think Christian Paniagua's art will provide that kind of delight for many young readers. When it comes to Crow, his strength in this book lies in some of the quirky, silly, and funny depictions of animals' 'personalities' -- particularly the cat and the dog -- and especially in the contrast between the two. (As a cat person, I deeply appreciate the fact that the cat is intelligent and dignified [yes, yes, she's also arrogant] while the dog is really not very bright and often ridiculous.) One of my favorite things in the whole book: the dog's superhero costume is a silly mash-up of a dinosaur hat, a mask that makes me think of Zorro or a Mexican wrestler , and a small red cape. The cat's superhero costume is a cat suit. Then, there is also the way that dog (Petruchio) speaks in nonsense... but it is often very funny, clever nonsense. He gets words confused or forgets the correct word for a sentence so often that he ends up saying things like, "Cake! That's enough hopscotch out of you! Prepare to meet your potato." Meet and potato? Get it?? Yuk yuk. There is also a little word play I particularly liked with "disapeached" instead of disappeared. I laughed... but then I also thought, "Come on, dude, that one requires seeing the word, not hearing it [since the 'pear' in disappear is not pronounced like 'pear' the fruit, this is a purely visual pun]... and how many kids are gonna be hearing it instead of seeing it?" Many times you can deduce what Petruchio means because what he says at least rhymes with or is a clever malapropism of the intended word. But every once in a while it's either utter nonsense or I wasn't clever enough to Get It. Which would really worry me -- not because I am unquestionably the smartest person you have ever met, ever... but because I think it's safe to assume, my ego and impressive academic credentials aside aside, that a bevy of randomly-selected 5 year old children would not get a number of vocabulary-related puns, jokes, and verbal transformations that I didn't get even after a fair bit of contemplation. Overall, I would say that The Case of the Paranoid Panda does a lot of what Pet Shop Heroes is trying to do, significantly better than Pet Shop Heroes ultimately does it; but, Pet Shop Heroes is probably more suited to a younger audience, so it might be better for them, when Paranoid Panda is still a bit too sophisticated and complex for them to understand (or pay attention to). I continue to feel like Bliss Group Books is on the right track with their offerings, but overall needs to have a slightly more assertive editorial staff trying to elevate some charming stories into Really Good Books. ** Net Galley hooked me up with an advance copy of this book in return for an honest review. Please feel free to comment or ask me any questions if you like!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Reading Reindeer 2021 On Proxima Centauri

    REVIEW: PET SHOP HEROES by Stanford Crow PET SHOP HEROES is truly delightful and magical! A super read for elementary and middle grades, and with lovely and comical illustrations, great to read to younger children. Kids who love super heroes [what child doesn't?], magic and fantasy, or science, will each enjoy this story, which combines all of these, and gives a good moral lesson as well. I hope this will become a series of adventures for the four heroes of the pet shop. REVIEW: PET SHOP HEROES by Stanford Crow PET SHOP HEROES is truly delightful and magical! A super read for elementary and middle grades, and with lovely and comical illustrations, great to read to younger children. Kids who love super heroes [what child doesn't?], magic and fantasy, or science, will each enjoy this story, which combines all of these, and gives a good moral lesson as well. I hope this will become a series of adventures for the four heroes of the pet shop.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Pop Bop

    "Pave the Swirl", er, "Save the World" This is a pretty manic book, but it has a lot of interesting things going on that might be fun for a young reader or a read-to listener. The setup is straight forward enough. SPOILERS: An evil Snake works on a magic potion to give himself superpowers, and he becomes able to hypnotize people into doing his bidding. But, the potion hits a mosquito, who in turn bites four animals in a pet shop. These four, a puppy, a chameleon, a guinea pig, and a cat, develop s "Pave the Swirl", er, "Save the World" This is a pretty manic book, but it has a lot of interesting things going on that might be fun for a young reader or a read-to listener. The setup is straight forward enough. SPOILERS: An evil Snake works on a magic potion to give himself superpowers, and he becomes able to hypnotize people into doing his bidding. But, the potion hits a mosquito, who in turn bites four animals in a pet shop. These four, a puppy, a chameleon, a guinea pig, and a cat, develop superpowers as well. Then they duke it out with, and ultimately outsmart, the evil Snake. There's your plot. But here's the fun angle. Cat is a natural leader; Chameleon is science minded; Guinea Pig is strong; and Puppy is an exciteable knucklehead. All of them are engaging, and they display characteristics appealing to a kid reader. The puppy always mixes up words, (see above), which allows for a lot of clever word play and some sophisticated teaching about words and their meanings. Even better, though, is Chameleon's devotion to science and to "The Scientific Method!". At different points the gang has to figure out how they got superpowers and how to stop Snake's mind control. For each of these puzzles Chameleon figures out the correct answer by using the Question, Observation, Guess (hypothesis), Test (experiment), Conclusion method. This is a heck of concept to put into an early-reader superhero actioner, and it is done seamlessly and effectively. Wow. Some of the word play may be over reader's heads, and some of the action might be hard to follow, and the plot screams along at a speedy clip, all of which might make this hard to follow in places. But, better to aim high than low, (no cheap fart stuff in here), and I'm all for not underestimating even the youngest readers/listeners. So, I'm not sure how you put humorous wordplay, action, superheroes, pets, and the scientific method into one short, heavily illustrated, (well illustrated), book, but they've pretty much pulled that off here. This struck me as worth a close look. Please note that I received a free advance ecopy of this book in exchange for a candid review. Apart from that I have no connection at all to either the author or the publisher of this book.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Betsy

    I was actually given this book by the publisher after I reviewed the soon to be published Lazy Cat Hero: Rise of the Nap (a review of that is coming closer to it's December 11 release date). He recommend this and a couple other books. This is a children's chapter book, easy enough for my fourth grader to read (with ease) and even my slower second grader to read with some help. Plus, it was only 60 pages, so it was quick enough that they didn't feel like we were reading the same book for weeks on I was actually given this book by the publisher after I reviewed the soon to be published Lazy Cat Hero: Rise of the Nap (a review of that is coming closer to it's December 11 release date). He recommend this and a couple other books. This is a children's chapter book, easy enough for my fourth grader to read (with ease) and even my slower second grader to read with some help. Plus, it was only 60 pages, so it was quick enough that they didn't feel like we were reading the same book for weeks on end. The characters in this book were fun to follow. The puppy, Petruchio, gets excited and puts the wrong words in his sentences which made the girls laugh every time. We also really liked that they had drawings every other page. The drawings were almost penciled but amazing. One last thing that mom appreciated was that they had a couple instances where they used scientific method to solve problems. Helps reiterate what they learn in school. Overall we give this book four out of five stars. Would be a great addition to any library or children's bookshelf.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Carla Johnson-Hicks

    This is a cute beginning reader chapter book for young children. The evil snake releases a gas in the air that gives a mosquito magic powers. If you get bitten by the mosquito, you also acquire magic powers. The snake is able to hypnotize anyone and he wants to take over the world. The Pet shop Heroes become strong, can fly, are acrobatic and a secret power that is not revealed until the end of the book. They get costumes and head off to the mayor's house to save her and the town from the evil s This is a cute beginning reader chapter book for young children. The evil snake releases a gas in the air that gives a mosquito magic powers. If you get bitten by the mosquito, you also acquire magic powers. The snake is able to hypnotize anyone and he wants to take over the world. The Pet shop Heroes become strong, can fly, are acrobatic and a secret power that is not revealed until the end of the book. They get costumes and head off to the mayor's house to save her and the town from the evil snake. The snake has hypnotized some men and they become his evil goons who do his bidding. It is accidentally discovered that when the snake is confused, his powers slip. There is some scientific methods explained in the book. A cute read with cute illustrations. I received a copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Ruby

    When Sly the snake discovers he has superpowers, he does what any evil snake would do... he tries to take over the city. Have no fear though... the Pet Shop heroes are on the case. Four feisty pets ( Guinea pig, cat, puppy, and Chameleon) with powers of their own take on Sly in a battle to save the world... all the while keeping things a wee bit silly. This was a pretty cute story with lots of places for read Loud special effects and adorable illustrations. A great beginner chapter book with some When Sly the snake discovers he has superpowers, he does what any evil snake would do... he tries to take over the city. Have no fear though... the Pet Shop heroes are on the case. Four feisty pets ( Guinea pig, cat, puppy, and Chameleon) with powers of their own take on Sly in a battle to save the world... all the while keeping things a wee bit silly. This was a pretty cute story with lots of places for read Loud special effects and adorable illustrations. A great beginner chapter book with some good vocabulary words to help young readers development, I hope to see it continue. My kids loved the pet theme hoping ours would develope powers of their own.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Karen

    Pet Shop Heroes is an endearing read for elementary school readers. It's plot is very basic. Children in the younger years will probably enjoy the antics of the energetic and fun heroes and hope that Sly the Snake can be defeated. Beyond 2nd grade I don't think it will really captivate them. I thought the detailed, black and white line drawings were vibrant and fun to look at and liked the use of the concept of the scientific method. Perfect for budding scientist. Thank you NetGalley for allowin Pet Shop Heroes is an endearing read for elementary school readers. It's plot is very basic. Children in the younger years will probably enjoy the antics of the energetic and fun heroes and hope that Sly the Snake can be defeated. Beyond 2nd grade I don't think it will really captivate them. I thought the detailed, black and white line drawings were vibrant and fun to look at and liked the use of the concept of the scientific method. Perfect for budding scientist. Thank you NetGalley for allowing me to review this book for an honest opinion.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie (Reading is Better With Cupcakes)

    I thought that this was really cute. I also liked it adding the lesson about the scientific method into the story. The illustrations were also really nicely done. The snake was so creepy! Loved it! This review is based on an eARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jacob

    Read my full review and others at: http://eyesandbooks.weebly.com/ollies... Great kids book with action, adventure, and more! Great characters and worth checking out for sure! Read my full review and others at: http://eyesandbooks.weebly.com/ollies... Great kids book with action, adventure, and more! Great characters and worth checking out for sure!

  10. 4 out of 5

    reginakey

  11. 4 out of 5

    Jessica Bindt

    Quick read a great book to introduce science

  12. 5 out of 5

    CBC Diversity

  13. 5 out of 5

    Frederick Rotzien

  14. 5 out of 5

    Micielle

  15. 4 out of 5

    Rachella Baker

  16. 5 out of 5

    Amy

  17. 4 out of 5

    Phyllis Barlow

  18. 4 out of 5

    Patti

  19. 5 out of 5

    Dawn Obrien

  20. 5 out of 5

    Cynthia Schwarzer

  21. 4 out of 5

    Gordon Bingham

  22. 5 out of 5

    Ann Ellis

  23. 4 out of 5

    Joy Adams

  24. 4 out of 5

    Heather

  25. 5 out of 5

    Todd Rumsey

  26. 5 out of 5

    Emiley Allen Bowes

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kathy Heare Watts

  28. 4 out of 5

    Ted

  29. 5 out of 5

    Beth

  30. 4 out of 5

    Sherry Murillo

  31. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Crawley

  32. 5 out of 5

    Darlene Dufrene-estay

  33. 4 out of 5

    Pam

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