Cleopatra in Space, Book 1: Target Practice, by Mike Maihack, for Timeslip Tuesday (I loved it)

Cleopatra in Space, Book 1: Target Practice, a hundred and seventy page full color graphic novel suitable for young and less young by Mike Maihack (GRAPHIX, April 29, 2014).

Me, showing once again why I am not a professional reviewer:  Oh my gosh,  this was a such a fun book! I loved loved loved it!

Me, struggling to reign in my (utterly justifiable) enthusiasm:

Book 1 of Ceopatra in Space--Target Practice--gets the series off to a flying start.   Cleopatra (yes, that Cleopatra) is an ordinary Egyptian princess, more or less--she's not a model of courtly decorum, being much fonder of slingshot practice than she is of submitting to her education, and indeed ordinary princesses might not habitually dose their tutor's tea with soporific chamomile.   But her expectations of one day assuming royal obligations (though she's by no means anxious to do so) are ordinary enough.

But then!  Exploring the hidden chambers behind a mysterious door, Cleo activates a portal that whisks her far into the future, and far into space.   She finds herself in a galaxy in danger from a villainous enemy that has seized all but fraction of learning amassed during the millennia that have passed since her own time.  And she finds herself hailed as the savior of the Nile Galaxy, whose coming was foretold in a prophecy.

Cleo has doubts.  Lots of doubts.  But the sentient cats who govern the Nile Galaxy are determined to make sure she will fulfill the saving part of things.

But first, she must go to school.  Fortunately for Cleo, the horror of more algebra is off-set by new friends, and by combat practice...and when Cleo is sent on her first quest (on her utterly awesome space-travelling sphinx motorbike), it's the later that come in handy....

Cleo is great, the sentient cats are great, the premise is great, the story is great, and the art is great.  It is a great book and WHY do I have to wait till next April for the sequel??????  I want more now.

A must for fans of Zita the Spacegirl and Astronaut Academy.

A must for those who want books with strong girl characters to offer young readers of any gender, and, Cleo being a brown girl of ancient Egypt, a great diverse read!  (it isn't as clear on the cover that Cleo has darker skin,  but it does inside).

A must for cat lovers!

Here's a preview.


  1. That is a brilliant concept! Plus sentient cats. This is turning out to be a good year for graphic novels, too--I'm starting to be won over.

  2. It seems odd to make Cleopatra brown to me, as she was a Ptolemy/Greek. But this sounds fun!

    1. Well, it's a lighter brown--more the sort of dark tan a Mediterranean person might get playing hooky from school, the way Cleo does, vs Sub Saharan brown....but it makes her believable north African, and clearly not Northern European pasty white!

  3. This does sound great, thanks for the link to the preview what a wonderful idea.

  4. [Pause to look this up in the library catalog]... this sounds fabulous! And we have it! I must take it home today.

  5. I can't say I loved it as much as Zita, but it was a great start to a new series. I definitely love the Egyptian theme and Cleo is shaping up to be a very real character. Hopefully the rest of the series will be as good.


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