Billy the Kid is Not Crazy by S.F. Guerra

billy the kid is not crazyFirst the kudos-by-association-department: Local reader-writer-teacher-blogger Stephanie Guerra has written a fine book for 8-12 year olds published through Amazon Children’s Publishing. They’ve recently distributed advance reader copies to local school libraries-like mine- along with the offer  to come do author visits. What’s not to love?!?

Billy is not crazy, he’s just an 11 year old Calvin-without Hobbes-whose active imagination trips him up at every turn. The world does not appreciate secret codes scribbled in textbooks, or baseballs hurled into livingroom mirrors intending to protect his sister from amorous advances of dreadlocked teenage boyfriend;  that sort of thing. His parents, teachers and older sister are exasperated, and even his best friend Keenan suspects something needs to be done. He’s sent to a shrink fearing that he’ll be drugged and turned into a compliant automaton; but instead emerges with a behavior contract and a new cell phone that lets him create his own videos to channel his creative energy and curb his impulsive impulses-almost. I have no doubt that my upper elementary students will love the West Seattle setting as much as they enjoy Billy’s everyday misadventures.  He’s a character every bit as lovable as the other Billy of Kevin Henkes “The Year of Billy Miller.”   I highly recommend both these great little ‘tweeny novels for their humorous depiction of boys growing up.  R

-Craig Seasholes, Sanislo Elementary

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