By: Chris Schweizer
Illustrated by: Courtney Huddleston
Publisher: Graphic Universe
Publication Date: July 2011
Reviewed by: Deb Fowler
Review Date: January 2012
There are many "Tricky Journeys" that you can take in this book, and every one of them can be different depending on which path you take. Spider was out for a walk heading toward the village to get some breakfast. It was very unusual to see the streets empty. No Elephant, no Gazelle, no Hippo, no Antelope ... why not even Lion was there to bully anyone out of their food. All of a sudden Gazelle stuck his nose out from behind the cloth curtain of his hut and asked why Spider was roaming the streets. Everyone knew that it was a dangerous thing to do!
Gazelle told Spider that "Police Captain Bongo moved away" and "went back to his home" so there was no one to protect them. Lion and Blacksnake were lurking around the village and it was dangerous for a kid like Spider to be out by himself. Spider was not at all worried and claimed that he "could be the village police captain." If he wasn't careful he just could wind up being a snack for either one of those dangerous critters if he didn't make the right decisions. Would he try to police the village and protect them from Lion or would he choose to go after Blacksnake?
There isn't only one ending to the basic story, but rather several depending on which way the reader chooses to go. Spider could rid the town of Blacksnake, he could become a tasty tidbit for Blacksnake, or put some criminal critters in jail. Spider comes from West Africa where everyone has some stories to tell about him. Choose-your-own-ending tales are very popular with young readers who enjoy the varied endings. The panels in this graphic novel are colorful, vibrant, and mesh well with the stories. In the back of the book is a brief historical vignette about the origin of spider tales.
Quill says: This is a fun tricky twister tale of Spider who thinks if he becomes a police captain he can help his town.