Tommy and the Order of Cosmic Champions | Dedicated Review

Book Review of Tommy and the Order of Cosmic Champions
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The Children’s Book Review

Tommy and the Order of Cosmic Champions

Written by Anthony J. Rapino and Anthony D. Grate

Ages 10+ | 392 Pages

Publisher: Greenleaf Book Group | ISBN-13: 9781626349667

What to Expect: Coming of age, overcoming obstacles, friendships, family conflicts, and bullying.

Told with brutal honesty and insight into the problems of adolescence, Tommy and the Order of Cosmic Champions explores divorce, broken friendships, lost childhood, and bullying through the metaphor of comic book heroes and villains.

Tommy is having the worst summer. His parents have transitioned from fighting to separation. His best friend has ditched him for someone else and has topped off the betrayal by sabotaging his twelfth birthday party. The only ray of hope that Tommy can see is the contest. “Create your own OoCC character and win!” (p. 41).

Order of Cosmic Champions has been Tommy’s obsession for years, and he knows that if he can just win the contest, everything will be okay again. Unfortunately, real life doesn’t work the way comic books do. When things don’t go to plan, Tommy realizes it will take a different sort of imagination to decide who he will be in this new and strange reality called adolescence.

Although it is far from being an easy read, this is a novel that readers will be unable to put down. Tommy’s struggles for hope and joy despite the adult problems he shoulders are infectious. Readers will want to be aware that there is some profanity and violence in the story; nevertheless, the novel is both thought-provoking and uplifting and well worth the emotional investment.

Tommy and the Order of Cosmic Champions is a challenging but rewarding heart-warming coming-of-age novel.

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Anthony J. Rapino: Author Headshot

About Anthony J. Rapino

Anthony J. Rapino resides in Northeastern Pennsylvania with his cats Luna and Poe. When he’s not writing speculative fiction, Anthony can be found in the classroom teaching English or crouched in dark alleyways sculpting horrific autumnal creatures out of clay. His work has appeared in On Spec, Acapella Zoo, Black Ink Horror, Madhouse, Liminal Spaces, and others. His novel, Soundtrack to the End of the World, and the story collection, Greetings from Moon Hill, are both available now.

ANthony D Grate: Author Headshot

About Anthony D. Grate

Anthony D. Grate lived through the ’80s, from ages six to sixteen, by surviving on steady doses of Masters of the Universe, Kool-Aid that he put way too much sugar in, and BarNones. Occasionally he put pencil to paper and created comic strips to entertain his friends. He dreamed of one day working for Marvel or DC. Once out of college, however, he found himself selling furniture. Life sure is funny.

After a few failed attempts to use a new thing called ”the internet” to find a nice lady to share life with, a nice lady found him. They married and soon found themselves raising four children together. Meanwhile, in his spare time, Anthony tried desperately to appease the creative spirit dwelling within him. Comic strips, websites, books, board games, interactive online games . . . you name it, he probably gave it a shot.

Nowadays, Anthony juggles the responsibilities of a husband, father, business owner, and creator pretty well—or at least he thinks so. He lives in the same quiet corner of Ohio that he always has, with no plans of changing that. The guy’s not much for change, which is probably why he still watches Masters of the Universe and eats too many BarNones. He did ditch the Kool-Aid, however.

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August 13, 2022 at 12:34PM Dr. Jen Harrison