Thursday, 14 April 2016

Blatantly Bogus by Paul Stafford- Review by Carlyn

Blantantly Bogus by Paul Stafford is part of a collection of short stories for children. There are six books in total. This is book number one.

There are seven stories to each book. The stories in this book include:

The Electric Undies- Will makes undies that will make him smarter so that he can cheat on a test.

The Funnel Web Run- Barney loves torturing spiders until they get their revenge on him.

The Big Dinner- A big dinner party goes wrong when the suckling pig is misplaced.

The Miraculous Muscle Machine- A scrawny boy gets a muscle machine.

Brainiac- An arrogant prodigy bets he can make the best science project.

Flee Fly- A kid who is mean to flies.

The Discount Christmas Company- A bum is hired to play Santa.

The stories usually have some kind of twist and some of the protagonists are horrible people who get their comeuppance at the end.

My sixth grade teacher read the whole series to the class. I really enjoyed it especially for the twists which I didn’t see coming as a kid. The books are no longer in print. I forgot all about the series until I found a copy at the newsagent some years ago. It was buried underneath some old magazines and other paperbacks. There wasn’t even a price on it so they decided that it would cost a dollar.

I bought the book to see if I would still enjoy the series as an adult and so that I could read it to a class one day. After reading the stories, I discovered that I still think it is an entertaining read.  It wasn’t as exciting as hearing the stories the first time around though. I knew everything that would happen in the stories.

The series is aimed at middle school kids and I think they would enjoy it. The stories are funny and all the stories are about kids. Some of the language is bawdy and I realized that my teacher must have censored some of it when reading aloud. I would be comfortable giving it to a young family friend but I wouldn’t give it to a student.  

I hope to collect all the books again but I won’t be gung ho about it. I’ll just rummage around for it whenever I’m at a thrift shop rather than buy it from Amazon. I won’t be sad if I never manage to get the complete collection.


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