Title: The King of Average
Author: Gary Schwartz
Publisher: Bunny Moon Enterprises, LLC.
Publication Date: 2015
Page Count: 228 (PDF file)
Age Recommendation: 11
How I Came Across the Book: I GOT A REQUEST!!!!! THANK YOU!!!
James isn’t the world’s greatest kid, but he’s not the worst, either: he’s average! When he decides to become the most average kid who ever lived, James is transported to another world where he meets Mayor Culpa, a well-dressed talking Scapegoat who recruits him to become the new King of Average.
He’s joined on his quest by a professional Optimist and his grouchy companion, an equally professional Pessimist. Together, they set out on a journey of self-discovery that leads them all the way from the Sea of Doubt to Mount Impossible, the highest peak in the Unattainable Mountains. When James stumbles into a Shangri-la called Epiphany, he uncovers the secret of who he really is.
Follow James on his hilarious, adventure-packed journey to find self-worth in this heartfelt middle grade novel The King of Average by debut author Gary Schwartz. ~ Goodreads
Well… This certainly wasn’t your average middle grade book *finger guns* ;). The book overall was very enjoyable. And there were almost no cliches. Like, on the cliche’o’meter it would get a -2 on a scale from 1-10. So HUGE pat on the back for that! That’s something that you don’t see everyday…or really ever. Another above average thing I liked about this book was the use of words and the creativity that went into the story! Like there was a character named Slim Chance and there was a little bird that someone got around messages to everyone. It used metaphors in a way that I was like, ‘HOW HAS THIS NOT BEEN DONE BEFORE!?’ So whoop whoop! If I had to compare this book with another, I would compare it with Alice in Wonderland. It was just so strange and wacky it was kind of scary at some times XD. And I also really loved some of the characters. They each had their own unique voice and personality! My favorite was Kiljoy the professional pessimist, *dabs* (I could really relate XD). However, the main character James felt really…just…flat. Like, I felt like the author was saying he was a kid-but was writing him like an adult. James was amazingly mature and I never actually felt like I got any emotion from him. The one other issue I had was that the book was so weird, it was just…out there. (a.k.a. it was totally out of my league and I’m jealous…But still :,(). And at the end it got extremely dark and I was just like WOAH NELLY! WOW OK! Like don’t get me wrong, it was a very important and somewhat ignored issue, but from the feel of the entire book it just came out of nowhere so it was sorta a shocker.
“O‐oh‐oh, he was such an average king!” the goat rhapsodized. “So wonderfully mediocre!”
“I believe I will,” said James, laughing loudly. Everyone joined in, except for Kiljoy, who stewed contentedly in his own misery.
“What happened to the river, anyway? It was calm and shallow just a second ago.”
“It’s the River Maunder, a tributary of the mighty Meander. You can’t just cross it. It gets angry if you do. You’ve heard the expression ‘Don’t cross me or you’ll regret it?’