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Children's Fiction Superheroes

The Comic Book War

by (author) Jacqueline Guest

Coteau Books
Initial publish date
May 2014
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    May 2014
    List Price

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Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 12 to 14
  • Grade: 7 to 9


Can three comic-book superheroes, and a rock that falls from the sky, really protect Robert Tourond's brothers as they fight the enemy in Europe during World War II? It's 1943 and World War II is raging. 13-year-old Robert Tourond is safe at home in Calgary, but his three brothers are all overseas, fighting the Nazis. A dreamer, Robert closely follows the exploits of his three favourite comic book heroes - Captain Ice, Sedna of the Sea and the Maple Leaf Kid - who also battle thebad guys in the weekly comics he spends his allowance on. Robert decides that the superheroes will protect his brothers and bring them home, so when he recovers a meteorite that he saw fall in Nose Hill Park near his home, in the very same week that a meteorite features in the story lines of all three of his heroes, he has no doubt that a magical link exists between them. Robert has a nemesis of his own on the streets of Calgary — a girl they call "Crazy Charlie", though not to her face. Charlie and Robert's paths seem entwined as well — Charlie wins the prize money that Robert badly needs to keep the comics coming. When Robert gets a job delivering telegrams, Charlie's doing it too, cutting into his profits. First they discover exactly what news those telegrams they're fighting to deliver has for the recipients. Then Charlie has to deliver one to Robert's house. Can Robert and his heroes really protect all three brothers and bring them home? What will happen if reality comes crashing into his world, like a meteorite falling from space? Who will help then?

About the author

Award-winning author JACQUELINE GUEST is the author of numerous Lorimer novels, including the Arthur Ellis Award nominee Wild Ride and A Goal in Sight, which was shortlisted for a Golden Eagle Children's Choice Book Award. Many of her novels have also been Canadian Children's Centre Our Choice selections including the SideStreets novel At Risk, and the Sports Stories novels Hat Trick, Free Throw, and Soccer Star. Jacqueline Guest lives in Bragg Creek, Alberta.

Jacqueline Guest's profile page

Librarian Reviews

The Comic Book War

It’s 1943 when Robert Tourond gets a message from a falling meteorite – his favourite comic book superheroes really ARE protecting his brothers, who are all overseas fighting “that Hitler.” All Robert has to do is keep buying those comic books, and he’ll make sure everyone stays safe and sound. Robert soon discovers that although he and others on the Home Front can make a difference, he and his heroes cannot really protect his brothers.

Comic books are the passion and salvation of Robert, an adolescent who finds himself caught up in the events of World War II. Robert’s story focuses on the importance of communications and telegrams to the war effort. Many students will relate to Robert’s love of comic book superheroes, and benefit from the way in which Robert uses familiar stories of superheroes to make sense of the tumult of wartime.

Also available: Ghost Messages by Jacqueline Guest; Outcasts of River Falls by Jacqueline Guest

Author available for school visits. @JacquelineGuest

Source: Association of Canadian Publishers. Top Grade Selection 2016.

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