Title: Cleopatra in Space #1: Target Practice
Author: Mike Maihack
Check this book out on Goodreads.
When a young Cleopatra (yes, THAT Cleopatra) finds a mysterious tablet that zaps her to the far, REALLY far future, she learns of an ancient prophecy that says she is destined to save the galaxy from the tyrannical rule of the evil Xaius Octavian. She enrolls in Yasiro Academy, a high-tech school with classes like algebra, biology, and alien languages (which Cleo could do without), and combat training (which is more Cleo’s style). With help from her teacher Khensu, Cleo learns what it takes to be a great leader, while trying to figure out how she’s going to get her homework done, make friends, and avoid detention! (Source: Goodreads)
Cleopatra finds a portal to the future, which takes her to a galaxy that’s at risk. She’s meant to fulfill a prophecy in which she saves the galaxy from invasion and certain doom. Cleopatra’s not so sure though. She’s stuck taking classes like math, languages, and history. What she really likes is target practice and combat training, both classes hs excels at. The council isn’t so sure she really is the one to fulfill the prophecy so they send her on a mission that she may not be prepared for.
This book was so adorable! The story is pretty cute, with a cool twist on history and some awesome science fiction elements. I loved the art, which is so adorable. The characters were really interesting, Cleopatra is something of a typical teen who doesn’t enjoy school and would rather go out into the world and explore. I really enjoyed this book because of the art and the humor. It’s really adorable and fun to read, definitely great for the intended middle graders.
Obviously the story is a little…unbelievable, but it’s so cute and science fiction-y and just fun! Cleopatra finds this pad that takes her to the future where she’s asked to save the galaxy from invasion. Cleopatra is pretty much the best person to do this because she is fierce, strong, and really awesome at combat as it turns out. I thought this was so adorable. The world building is fairly complex and detailed, which I thought might be a little difficult for kids especially as the explanation is quite long. I think middle grade would be okay with it, but even then it’s a little much. There’s definitely a lot more that can be developed in future books which I am certainly excited about because the story looks like it will prove to get more complex. The council that is monitoring Cleopatra seems to have some secrets and I definitely want to see how that turns out in the next book.
Cleopatra, as I’ve said, it really strong and fierce. She’s definitely got some great combat skills and is really very tough. She’s a great, strong female lead, which makes this a really good book for young girls to check out. (It would probably be a great intro to sci-fi!) Her sidekick/teacher Khensu is really great, though he’s used a bit too much as a mouthpiece for some of the more preachy lessons in this book. Basically he’s used as a way to remind kids to study and how math is important, it’s a little too direct sometimes though. Cleo has some friends in her new home as well, including a possible love interest (a nerdy scientist).
The art in this is super cute. I loved Cleopatra’s design, she’s very sleek and cool looking. She definitely fits right into the futurist design of the world in the book. This is pretty much the style that I always love, lots of cartoony designs with sleek lines and round everything. There’s something really striking about the futuristic style of this because it’s this combo modern and Ancient Egyptian style. I definitely loved the art a lot, which is basically why I bought the book (isn’t that always the case with me?).
I highly recommend this book, it’s a great read with adorable art. I could see fans of Raina Telgemeier reading this book.