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Book Review: Four Eyes by Rex Ogle (Scholastic US)

Illustrated by Dave Valeza


For ages 8+


Four Eyes by Rex Ogle and Dave Valeza (Out 11.5.23 | Scholastic US) For ages 8+. Rex has had the best Summer holidays ever, hanging out with his best mate Drew, and now it’s the last day before they both start at Middle School together (that’s Year 7 in the UK). His first day has all the usual signs of a nerve-wracking first experience… BUT the worst thing that happens is that Rex finds that he’s having trouble seeing - the board’s blurry in class, he’s got a headache, the TV’s blurry, and it’s scary. His worst nightmare… he needs glasses! For fans of the bestselling graphic novels, ‘New Kid’ by Jerry Craft and ‘Smile’ by Raina Telgemeier. Find out more www.thekidsbookscurator.com

About the book

🌱Rex has had the best Summer holidays ever, hanging out with his best mate Drew, and now it’s the last day before they both start at Middle School together (that’s Year 7 in the UK). His first day has all the usual signs of a nerve-wracking first experience… Rex is surrounded by bigger, more mature kids; the locker code isn’t working properly, Drew’s choice of ‘new friends’ at lunch scoff at Rex’s being on the ‘free lunch program’… BUT the worst thing that happens is that Rex finds that he’s having trouble seeing - the board’s blurry in class, he’s got a headache, the TV’s blurry, and it’s scary. His worst nightmare… he needs glasses. Kids with glasses get teased.


Words © Rex Ogle + Illustrations © Dave Valeza


🌱Yes, lovely readers this is a graphic novel all about an 11 yr old kid who desperately needs glasses. There’s a lot going on for Rex in the background too - his mum and dad have had a messy divorce with Dad being on his 2nd family and far wealthier in his new life, leaving mum and her new partner struggling on very low incomes looking after Rex and his younger stepbrother, barely scraping by. All this, and he’s got to navigate a deteriorating friendship with Drew, the class bullies, finding new friends and even more importantly getting his new glasses which aren’t affordable to them without his Dad’s financial contribution - all of which has to be negotiated.


Words © Rex Ogle + Illustrations © Dave Valeza


🌱The reader roots for Rex. All the way through the story, Rex comes across as caring, kind and sensible - an intelligent kid with a lot going for him. Only when truly up against the odds, backed into a corner, does he have his meltdown moments, despair. It can be quite palpable! What comes across is that with love and support from family, kids ultimately do find their tribe and settle down when transitioning to a new school, going through the beginnings of adolescence, finding their way. And, this is regardless of whether they wear glasses or need other support to be the best version of themselves. However, it's always so wonderful to see protagonists wearing glasses.


🌱For fans of the bestselling graphic novels, ‘New Kid’ by Jerry Craft and ‘Smile’ by Raina Telgemeier. Author Rex Ogle is an award-winning writer of hundreds of comic books and graphic novels + has created stories for Star Wars, LEGO, Power Rangers, Marvel Comics and more!! Scholastic do a really great job of keeping me well stocked with quality graphic novels, a hit with me especially as they champion underrepresented groups!!


About the creators


Rex Ogle (author)

Author, Rex Ogle

Rex Ogle is an award-winning author and the writer of nearly a hundred children’s books, comics, graphic novels, and memoirs—most notably Free Lunch, which won the ALA/YALSA award for Excellence in Non-Fiction.


Born and raised (mostly) in Texas, he moved to New York City after college to intern at Marvel Comics before moving over to DC Comics, Scholastic, and Little Brown Young Readers. As an editor, he championed over a dozen NY Times Bestsellers and worked on (and often wrote) major brands such as X-Men, Justice League, Star Wars, LEGO, Power Rangers, Transformers, Minecraft, Assassin’s Creed, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Neil Patrick Harris’s Magic Misfits.


Rex has written under a lot of pen names, including Trey King, Honest Lee, and Rey Terciero (a nickname given by his Abuela, being Español for “third king”, which is apt since Rex is Latin for “king”, and he is the third “Rex” in his family).


Now, Rex lives in Los Angeles where he writes in his spare time—that is, when he’s not outdoors hiking with his dog Toby, playing MarioKart with friends, or reading. (Source: rexogle.com)



Dave Valeza (illustrator)

Illustrator, Dave Valeza

Dave Valeza is an artist based in Savannah, GA.

His recent work can be seen in Josh Trujillo's comic series Love Machines, the queer comics anthology Anything That Loves, and the Burl & Fur anthology. Previous work includes a graphic novel for Archaia with Andrew Rostan, An Elegy for Amelia Johnson. (Source: davevaleza.com)



Key themes

Starting a new school

Starting middle / secondary school

Making friends

Friendship issues

Bullying

Wearing glasses

Poverty

Divorce

Blended families

Finding your voice

Puberty


Buy the book

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Format: Paperback

Publication date: 11 May 2023

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