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Children's Fiction General

Alison Dare, Little Miss Adventures

by (author) J. Torres

illustrated by J. Bone

Initial publish date
May 2010
General, Superheroes, Action & Adventure
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    May 2010
    List Price

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Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 9 to 12
  • Grade: 4 to 7


Alison Dare: Indiana Jones meets Lara Croft in fabulous, graphic adventures.

Alison Dare is not your typical twelve-year-old. She's the daughter of an archaeologist/adventurer and the masked hero known as the Blue Scarab. To top it off, she's also the niece of an international super-spy; it's no surprise that a craving for danger is in her blood! Unfortunately, her parents have locked her away at the prestigious St. Joan's Academy for Girls, hoping that this would lead to a more "normal" life for their daughter.
But despite all the strict rules at the school, Alison and her best pals - Wendy and Dot - somehow manage to find themselves involved in adventures that rival those of Alison's globetrotting, planet-saving relatives. Whether it's magic genies, super-powered bank robbers, or a dastardly baron bent on world domination, Alison Dare delivers the best thrills since Indiana Jones and more action than Lara Croft!

About the authors


JOSEPH TORRES est un auteur de bandes dessinées philippino-canadien. Il a notamment écrit les livres de la série Alison Dare, mise en nomination pour le prix Eisner, ainsi que ceux de la série Bigfoot Boy. Lauréat du prix Joe Shuster en tant qu’« écrivain exceptionnel », Joseph Torres a travaillé sur une foule de bandes dessinées, dont Avatar, Batman, Les Simpsons, WALL-E, Wonder Woman et X-Men. Joseph Torres est né à Manille et a grandi à Montréal, où il a fréquenté l’Université McGill. Il vit avec sa famille en banlieue de Toronto, en Ontario.


J. TORRES is a Canadian comic book writer. He is perhaps best known for his run on DC Comics' Teen Titans Go, the Eisner-nominated Alison Dare, and the Junior Library Guild/TD Summer Reading Club title Bigfoot Boy. Winner of the Shuster Award for "Outstanding Writer," Torres has worked with characters from A (Archies) to Z (The Mighty Zodiac) and many more in between (Avatar, Batman, Ninja Scroll, Simpsons, WALL-E, Wonder Woman, Yo Gabba Gabba, and X-Men, to name a few).


J. Torres' profile page

J. Bone's profile page

Editorial Reviews

"Meet 12-year-old Alison Dare, a youngster with a flair for action and adventure…. The fluid, confident B&W art can be detailed, and there’s a lot of dialogue to digest, but they give the sometimes predictable storyline a charm and freshness."
Publishers Weekly
"These are the comics I wish I had as a kid! … Jason Bone’s art really brings the story to life; it’s expressive without being exaggerated, and he really brings out the goofy humor of the stories."
Comic Book Resource
"…Bone’s open art is a wonderful counterpart to these funny tales of derring-do that don’t quite go as expected. His figures are simple and compact, suggesting unexpected power and ability…. Torres’ writing is playful, with occasional pop culture references…. It’s his humor that gives Alison Dare its unique twist. Many kids dream of magical adventures, and Alison’s experiences fill that desire nicely."
– Johanna, Comics Worth Reading

Librarian Reviews

Alison Dare: Little Miss Adventures

Alison Dare may look like an ordinary student at the St. Joan of Arc Academy for Girls, but this feisty, excitement-hungry heroine is anything but. Her mother is an internationally famous archaeologist. Her father a mild-mannered librarian who leads a secret life as local superhero The Blue Scarab. And whether it’s a visit from Uncle Johnny the super-spy or an ancient artifact’s power unleashed, adventure has a way of finding them all.

The first volume, Little Miss Adventures, contains three episodes. “Alison Dare and the Arabian Knights” introduces us to Alison and her talent for getting into trouble, as well as her closest friends, brainy Wendy and stalwart Dot. “Alison Dare and the Secret of the Blue Scarab” is both a romance and superheroic origin story for Alison’s father. In “Alison Dare and the Mummy Child,” a museum tussle over a valuable relic nearly thwarts our heroine’s efforts to spend time with her busy parents.

The Heart of the Maiden settles in for longer tales: “What I Did On My Summer Vacation,” which contrasts Alison’s runaway imagination with the (no less interesting) truth behind a recent adventure; and “Alison Dare and the Heart of the Maiden,” which gives us tantalizing hints at both the deep secrets of the St. Joan of Arc Academy and a prophesied role for Alison herself in a grand adventure to come. In both volumes each story is funny and welltold; this is clearly the work of a highly skilled graphic novel team.

In 2002, Little Miss Adventures was a nominee for the Will Eisner Comic Industry Award, and it’s easy to see why. J. Bone’s bold, sleek artwork is energetic and packed with visual details that reward close examination; characters are expressively drawn, and action scenes are kinetic without excessive violence. J. Torres’s witty text synergizes perfectly with the art, and is full of wry pop culture references that will entertain even an adult reader (in fact, one wonders if some such references might not zip past the books’ target audience.) Importantly, these references pose little danger of dating the series; they are gently humorous additions to a nostalgic, timeless world of radio and propeller planes that should appeal immensely to fans of Indiana Jones. Gentle treatments of issues — such as tensions in parental relationships — and educational tidbits are scattered throughout, giving Alison’s exploits just the right amount of depth. A solid addition to any collection, with appeal for any fan of tales of high adventure.

Lynette Terrill is an aspiring librarian, freelance writer and regular volunteer at the CCBC.

Source: The Canadian Children's Bookcentre. Fall 2010. Volume 33 No. 4.

Other titles by J. Torres

Other titles by J. Bone