Sanity and Tallulah, by Molly Brooks

This past week has been busy, with family, home-renovations, and determined reading of YA Speculative Fiction for the Cybils Awards.  But now the family are gone the home renovation can take a back seat (no houseguests expected till February) and I should have the time to blog more!  So here's one I just read, that's easy to write about because it is easy to see without much effort that it's good.

Sanity and Tallulah, by Molly Brooks (Disney-Hyperion, October 2018), is a fun science fiction graphic novel, particularly great for science-minded kids who love cats, but also good for story-minded kids/grown-ups who enjoy fun graphic novels.

Sanity and Tallulah are best friends, and so when Tallulah illicitly uses the lab of their space station home to create a three-headed kitten (Princess Sparkle Destroyer of Worlds), Sanity is there to help cuddle , and to be sad when the kitty is taken from them and imprisoned in the lab.  But PSDofW is not lacking in smarts either, and breaks free, disappearing into the bowels of the space station.  And at just about the same time, electrical malfunctions start plaguing the space station, and there are signs of chewed wires....is it the kitten(s) that are too blame, or some other menace?  Sanity and Tallulah set out to investigate (breaking more rules in the process), and discover that the whole space station is in danger of destruction.  Fortunately, Sanity's clandestine work in the lab has given her the skills she needs to fix the problem...but what will become of Princess Sparkle Destroyer of Worlds?

This is a great book for many reasons.  The friendship of the two girls is a joy to see; they are supportive of each other just beautifully!  The parents are involved and caring, though not always able to keep tabs on their kids, especially Sanity's parents, but they try.  And of course it's a joy to see smart girls doing science; it's not clear to me where Tallulah's own gifts lie, but she's there for her friend and perhaps future stories will give her more of a chance to shine.  The characters are diverse--Tallulah's mom, the senior scientist on the space station, is Latina and Sanity is black.

And on top of that, the story is interesting and engaging, and tense without being overwhelmingly so.  The illustrations help keep things light and the story on the fun side, even when things are going wrong, though the entertaining text doesn't need much help.

My only quibble is that I really wanted to have more context for this space station; there's a bigger story hinted at, and hopefully we'll see more of that in future books!

But in any event, if you have a graphic novel loving kid of 8-on up, offer this book!


  1. Awwww, this sounds great! I love this title and the story sounds adorable. Kitties in space!

  2. It sounds like this book has a lot going for it. I will try to check it out. Thanks for the review.

  3. I have this at home! Though somehow my graphic novel-loving daughter refused to read it, probably because I told her I thought she would like it... I'll have to check it out again after Cybils so I can read it myself.


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