Geeks, Girls, and Secret Identities, by Mike Jung

Geeks, Girls, and Secret Identities, by Mike Jung (Arthur A. Levine Books, October 2012) is a worthy addition to the superhero sub-genre of middle grade science fiction.  It's a fun, fast read,with an interesting twist--a girl gets to be the one who ends up with superhero powers.

When  Stupendous Alert sounds in Copperplate City, urging its residents to protect themselves as Captain Stupendous battles yet another bad guy, the streets fill with his eager fans.  Young Vincent Wu is part of a small and exclusive fan club (himself and his best friends), and so he's thrilled to get the chance to see the brave Captain battling Professor Mayhem's giant monster robot.  But something seems off about the great superhero....

And indeed, there is.  Polly Winnicott-Lee, the very girl Vincent has a crush on, has unwillingly assumed the superhero mantle.  She isn't interested in fighting bad guys, doesn't know how to use her new abilities to their best advantages, and finds the idea of slipping into the role of muscular, male superhero rather distasteful.

But when Vincent discovers her secret, he and his friends decide they can help Polly be the Captain Stupendous she was meant to be, and the hero their city needs.  Because the giant robot is still out there, threatening ultimate destruction!

This is one I can enthusiastically recommend to any younger middle-school kid, boy or girl.  It's told from Vincent's point of view, and he's an engaging, sympathetic narrator--he and the other boys in his circle have a fun dynamic going on.  But though I liked him just fine, and enjoyed the superhero shenanigans, my greatest pleasure was watching Polly adjusting to her superhero status, claiming the role for her own (yay girl power!). 

Plus it has a genuine sci fi twist, which should please the geeks drawn in by the title.

Further plus--Asian American kid Vincent (shown as such on the cover) makes this a nice one for my list of multicultural sci-fi/fantasy!


  1. I'll have to take another look at this one. For some reason, it didn't just grab me the first time.

  2. I saw the cover but never checked it out. Thanks for making me want to read it. Happy Holidays Charlotte!

  3. Bit discovered this book existed yesterday and now wants it sooo bad. I really want to read it too. I may go pick up a copy for us sooner now.

  4. If I were buying you a present, Ms. Y., this wouldn't be it...but I do think it has tons of target audience appeal! I hope the rest of you enjoy it!


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