Dan versus Nature
Booklist Reviews 2016 February #2
Sixteen-year-old comics artist Dan Weekes and his nerdy best friend, Charlie, are headed for a week-long wilderness survival adventure with Hank, his mother's fiancé; she wants the trip to be a "bonding" experience between son and future stepdad. Her track record with men is not promising, however, and Dan is worried about Hank's commitment. Charlie, on the other hand, senses opportunity: this wilderness jaunt is the perfect time to sabotage the relationship and upcoming marriage via lots of diarrhea, vomiting, body odor, embarrassing questions, and, well, the unexpected survival realities of a lost wilderness guide, a people-tracking black bear, and a crashed rescue plane—think Gary Paulsen meets Captain Underpants. Technology in the form of a perversely adapted Baby-Real-A-Lot (a lifelike doll that mimics a real baby), scatological and reproductive humor, and teenage boy sexual fantasies team up with tense backwoods situations to create a perfect middle-school read. Be prepared for lots of in-the-stacks snickering. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.
Horn Book Guide Reviews 2017 Spring
Dan is blindsided when his mom announces her engagement to the too-perfect Hank and sends the pair out on a wilderness survival trip to bond. Determined to prove Hank unfit for his mother, Dan plans several pranks that backfire spectacularly. South Park levels of gross-out humor mesh awkwardly with Dan's genuine fears and sadness about gaining a stepfather. Copyright 2016 Horn Book Guide Reviews.
PW Reviews 2016 February #1
In this laugh-out-loud gross-out comedy, 16-year-old Dan Weekes is forced to participate in a survivalist camping trip with his mother's new fiancé, and his attempts to sabotage the bonding experience go hilariously, horribly awry. Dan would rather draw comics than catch and cook his own dinner, and he certainly doesn't want handsome dentist Hank to become his new father. So Dan and his best friend Charlie launch an all-out campaign of terror designed to drive Hank away. But as the trip becomes a nightmarish struggle to elude hungry bears and survive in the wilderness, it's Dan who suffers the most, from food poisoning to poison ivy and wasp stings in unwelcome places. If their ragtag group—which also includes a hyper-smart, no-nonsense girl named Penelope—is to make it, they'll have to work together. Calame (Call the Shots) utilizes every juvenile humor trick in the book (body odor, flatulence, awkward sex jokes, regurgitation) to draw guilty laughter from Dan's onslaught of shameful experiences. The result is coming-of-age by way of catastrophe. Ages 14–up. Agent: Jodi Reamer, Writers House. (Apr.)[Page ]. Copyright 2016 PWxyz LLC