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Frankie Pickle and the Pine Run 3000 by Eric Wight – Review
I like the idea that Eric Wight brought to the table with the Frankie Pickle series, a chapter book and graphic novel mix for the kids (and adults). Well I reviewed the first book in the series over at our sister site, and the whole family enjoyed it. Now that we have book two, we took it out for a spin. What is great now is that my 6-year-old was able to read Frankie Pickle and the Closet of Doom and talk about it with me, so I cannot wait for him to read Frankie Pickle and the Pine Run 3000 and hopefully have some more discussion on it.
Eric Wight does all fathers of young boys a favor by writing this story. Eric allows the parents to read a story to their young boy or have their child read a story that gets to the heart of one of the things that dads fear: having their son doing a cool project without them, especially one in which they have experience. As a child it can be hard to realize that your parents went through the same things you are, just in a different era.
Eric Wight once again finds the perfect balance of imagination and real life with Frankie, who needs to win the Pine Run 3000 to move up in rank with his friends who are Possum Scouts, while at the same time giving us such gems as the “Kingdom of Cool” (AKA, Humphrey’s Hobby Shop) and “The League of Awesome.” See, that is where Eric Wight really grabs us, his ability to put Frankie in a real world dilemma, but at the same time acknowledge the fact that Frankie as a child has a different perspective on the way things are revolving around them. Well, that isn’t the only thing Wight does well; his meshing of chapter book and graphic novel is something that is of master status.
At the end of the day, Frankie learns a lesson that I hope works its way into my son’s head, and that is I (your dad) am only here to help you, and you do not need to do everything on your own to try and show that you are a big boy. Picking this book up is a no-brainer; it should be in everyone’s home library.
Frankie Pickle returns for another imaginative adventure and this time it all comes down to race cars. Well, not quite race cars, but the Pine Run Derby for scouts. Frankie is in danger of not advancing to the next ranking with the rest of his troop unless he can win the Pine Run 3000. But Frankie wants to do everything on his own so he imagines himself as a world-class sculptor, a mad scientist, and of course, a pro-racecar driver. In the end, Frankie learns that team work is the only way he won’t get left in the dust.