Maya Makes a Mess by Rutu Modan

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Maya Makes a Mess by Rutu Modan

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Category: For Sharing
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: John Lloyd
Reviewed by John Lloyd
Summary: A right royal mess is made with this fun comic for the novice reader.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 32 Date: November 2012
Publisher: Toon Books
ISBN: 9781935179177

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For once it is almost impossible to make a plot summary without giving almost the whole game away – such is the brevity of this bright and breezy book for those youngsters still reading with some supervision. Maya is at home and nothing she can do when eating lunch is to her parents' taste – her posture, her table manners or her use of the dog for leftovers. But lo and behold when they give the Queen as an example where she might need more decorum, there then comes a summons to dinner from the Queen – who would be more than surprised to see Maya in action…

The style of the piece is very much Herge – our creator has won an Eisner for more adult graphic novel work and so knows what she is doing, although here she throws the backgrounds into duller pastel than in Tintin and is never really in full flight when it comes to detail. The framing and reading of the piece is very much intent on clarity, even when some spreads have panels going completely from left to right, with which the young might not be completely at ease.

The star of the work is Maya, the auburn-haired girl with the innocent eyes and large appetite. Her mini-adventure starts off brilliantly, with such a matter-of-factness provided by the brevity and the need to hurry into the story that adults would snicker at the bluntness of the plotting. They will of course see the ending coming, and if anything that is spoilt by one of the rare captions being unnecessary. Before then we have a crisp and attractive picture book in comic book style, and the trail of spaghetti spreading throughout along the bottoms of all the pages is not the only thing to make the audience turn back to the beginning and follow the story several more times.

I must thank the publishers for my review copy.

If the local library has a storytime session in my hearing, they invariably offer up Not Now, Bernard by David McKee, as again parents' attitudes are at odds with what's best for their children.

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Buy Maya Makes a Mess by Rutu Modan at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Maya Makes a Mess by Rutu Modan at Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
Buy Maya Makes a Mess by Rutu Modan at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Maya Makes a Mess by Rutu Modan at


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