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The Misadventures of Salem Hyde: Book One:…

The Misadventures of Salem Hyde: Book One: Spelling Trouble (edition 2013)

by Frank Cammuso (Author)

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Title:The Misadventures of Salem Hyde: Book One: Spelling Trouble
Authors:Frank Cammuso (Author)
Info:Harry N. Abrams (2013), 96 pages
Collections:Your library

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Spelling Trouble by Frank Cammuso



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A young witch enters a spelling bee because she thinks it is a magic competition, only to find out it is about spelling words. This is a good book for teaching independence,confidence, and to be strong. It is a good, short chapter book for young readers. ( )
  tayburnett | Apr 17, 2018 |
First in the series of a contemporary and impulsive little witch who has trouble with spelling...and not just with words. Whammy the cat is hired to serve as Salem's companion to refine her powers. Meanwhile teacher Mr. Fink knows something is up with Salem and is determined to prove to the principal what is going on. Humorous and snappily paced. ( )
  Salsabrarian | Feb 2, 2016 |
Salem is a little girl with normal parents but has a great-aunt who is a witch. She's inherited the gene and is a head-strong girl who hasn't been able to control her magic or spells. Along comes Whammy to be her teacher. This is a cute, funny comic book drawn in monotone with shades of green. The humour is aimed at kids with the occasional joke or two aimed up higher to the adult who may be reading the book to the intended audience. This works well and kept me, the sole reader, interested. Both Salem and Whammy appeal to me and it's certainly the kind of thing I'd have loved at that age. Look forward to the next story. ( )
  ElizaJane | Oct 28, 2015 |
I'm not personally a fan of Cammuso's popular Dodgeball Chronicles trilogy, since I really dislike Arthurian legends in pretty much all forms, but kids love the silly puns and strong animated style. I was really annoyed when I discovered his books were only available in Graphix' flimsy paperbacks or expensive prebinds and I couldn't easily replace our damaged/missing copies.

So, I was excited to see he's debuting a new series with Amulet, and a beginning chapter one no less!

Salem Hyde is, as one might guess, a witch in training. Unfortunately, after one too many mishaps (who knew they were talking about spelling words and not casting spells?) her parents decide to get her a M.A.C., a Magical Animal Companion. Enter Mr. Whamsford, who is expecting a normal little witch and gets Salem, with all her foibles and mistakes. Salem isn't too happy either since she wanted a unicorn! When Salem accidentally gets picked for a spelling bee and things spiral out of control, she and Whammy will have to solve their differences and learn to be friends.

From the beginning the book plunges right into silly humor as Salem accidentally turns the ancient crossing guard into a dinosaur. More humor is supplied by the suspicious teacher, Mr. Fink, who seems to be the only one who sees Salem's shenanigans. Of course there's a mean girl, some wild vacuum rides, and plenty of spelling mistakes, both magical and mundane.

The galley I received was in black and white, but the final book will be in color. One inner plate showed just hues of green, but going by the cover and Cammuso's previous work, I'm assuming there will be full color throughout the story. The art has a classic cartoon feel with exaggerated eyes, deft lines and strokes filling in emotion, and easy to follow action moving from panel to panel. The storyline and art style isn't particularly ground-breaking or unique, but kids will love the humor and easily recognizable art style.

Verdict: A great filler for your graphic novel section, full of the easy humor that kids love and comic strip-style art. This will be another popular series from Cammuso and I highly recommend adding it.

ISBN: 9781419708039; Published October 2013 by Amulet/Abrams; ARC provided by publisher at ALA Annual 2013; Added to library order list
  JeanLittleLibrary | Oct 19, 2013 |
Salem Hyde is a young witch who just can’t seem to stay out of trouble so her parents get her a talking cat as an animal companion. She accidentally volunteers for her school’s spelling bee, but she doesn’t know the difference between spelling and casting a spell. That means trouble for her and her new animal companion Whammy. The story is told in a graphic novel format that should appeal to kids. The illustrations are vaguely reminiscent of older comic strips and are done partly in color, mostly black, white, and pale green. Younger readers, ages 7 through 9, should enjoy this story. There is a part where Whammy talks about Moby Dick that may confuse kids, but it does end up being relevant to the plot. Despite that, this cute story about the trouble that can come with spelling mistakes could be a good way to teach kids the value of correct spelling. ( )
  robincar | Oct 6, 2013 |
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To help her stay out of trouble, her parents find young witch Salem Hyde an animal companion, Percival J. Whamsford III. They do not much like each other, but when Salem enters the school spelling bee and tries to "spell" her way to victory, she needs Whammy's help.… (more)

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