- Expected 19 Jan 2021
From the best-selling author of the How to Be a Supervillian series comes this laugh-out-loud, heavily illustrated story of a shy boy, his best-friend-turned-ghost, and their bucket list of adventures and dares. Perfect for fans of the Timmy Failure and Diary of a Wimpy Kid series.
Larry’s got a few problems. In school, he’s one of those kids who easily gets lost in the crowd. And Grimm, Larry’s best friend in the whole world, has ghosted him. Literally. One minute Grimm was saving a cat in a tree during a lightning storm, and the next, he’s pulling pranks on Larry in his new ghostly form.
When the two best friends realize that there’s something keeping Grimm tethered to their world, they decide that finishing their Totally To-Do bucket list is the perfect way to help Grimm with his unfinished business. Pulling hilarious pranks and shenanigans may be easier with a ghostly best friend, but as Larry and Grimm brave the scares of seventh grade, they realize that saying goodbye might just be the scariest part of middle school.
In this illustrated novel, 12-year-old Larry, who is white, is shocked when his best friend, Grimm, who is Black, returns as a ghost two weeks after he died saving a cat in a storm. To discover what is keeping Grimm among the living, the friends try to cross items off their unfinished Totally To-Do List bathing in spaghetti, talking to every kid in school, kissing a girl, and feeding their neighbor's terrifying dog with varying, often comic, results. (Of the spaghetti soak: "You know, it's interesting. Like a noodle blanket.") But when they run afoul of "class freak" Boogie MacFarland, supposedly raised by bears, Larry and Grimm realize that their pranks and escapades, however well-meaning, have personal consequences for others. Fry (the How to Be a Supervillain series) balances a serious premise with a gleefully manic energy as Larry and Grimm wrestle with their dilemma and Larry slowly learns how to live without his best friend, in part with the help of a sympathetic therapist ("It's okay to be sad. It's okay to miss your friend"). Fry's black-and-white linework vibrant and just a little over-the-top adds hilarity, as in the opening sequence, where the two become fast friends while facing an overjostled soda can primed for detonation. Ages 8 12. \n