Welcome to my stop on the TBR and Beyond Tours Book Tour for Scout is Not a Band Kid by Jade Armstrong. When I first found out about this book, I knew it was one I would want to read. And don’t get me started on how much I love that cover! Be sure to scroll all the way to the bottom to see the tour schedule for other content creators.
Thank you to Jade Armstrong and Random House Graphic for providing me with an ARC for this review.
My name is Jade Armstrong, and I am a non-binary cartoonist. I was raised in a little town called Almonte, Ontario, before heading off to Toronto to work in comics and animation. I’ve worked as background painter in television for 4 years. At the moment, I float between Toronto, Almonte and Montréal.
More than anything I love to make comics. You can check out my full CV here!
My debut middle grade graphic novel, SCOUT IS NOT A BAND KID, is set to be published by Random House Graphics April 5th, 2022.
I’m also a member of the comics collective HELLO BOYFRIEND. We are a bunch of pals who love comics and make comics together!
About The Book
Title: Scout is Not a Band Kid
Author: Jade Armstrong
Publisher: Random House Graphic
Publishing Date: April 5th, 2022
Page Length: 272
Genre: Graphic Novel | Contemporary
Age Range: Middle Grade
Rating: 3.5 ⭐
A young girl in middle school will do whatever it takes to meet her favorite author–even if it means joining her school band! A contemporary graphic novel about making your dream come true–and the friends you make along the way.
When Scout learns that her favorite author is doing an exclusive autograph session at the end of the year, she’s determined to be there! She officially needs a plan…and when she finds out that her school’s band is heading to the same location for their annual trip, an idea takes shape. Being a band kid can’t be that hard, right?
As it turns out, learning how to play an instrument when you can’t even read music is much, much, MUCH tougher than expected. And it’s even harder for Scout when her friends aren’t on board with her new hobby. Will she be able to master the trombone, make new band friends, and get to her favorite author’s book signing? Tackling everything seems like a challenge for a supergenius superfriend supermusician–and she’s just Scout.
This was a cute Graphic Novel that follows Scout as she learns to play the trombone in Grade 8 band, while figuring out friendship and honesty. We learn fairly early on that Scout is fairly laid back and has ulterior motives to joining. I found the friendships Scout has were diverse: some being friendships since childhood (Grade 3), friends from the band, and friends from her favourite fandom! I enjoyed some of Scout’s friends more than others. I wasn’t fond of the long time friends since it felt like there were more interested in being “cool” than being true to themselves.
I did, however, love the interactions and eventual friendship between Scout and Merrin. These two were opposite, but I loved hoe they pushed each other outside their comfort zone. While Scout was the more Sunshine personality, quirky, Merrin was the Grump, although we learn that she is misunderstood.
The amount of Diversity in this book made me happy. There are a bunch of queer characters and the use of pronouns seem to be open and accepting (love to see it!). However, at no point were anything other than pronouns identified on page – so I’m unsure of the specific queer rep. There’s also Disability rep – amblyopia (lazy eye) – which wasn’t expected.
There’s actually a lot of music terminology and history sprinkled throughout the graphic novel – in fact, the first image sample shows some of the historical information about trombones. I loved this edition! When Scout is learning how to read music, it really made me nostalgic for band and music – I really do miss playing flute and piano.
The art style was cute and exactly the style I look for in a middle grade contemporary. With this being an arc, some dialog boxes and a lot of colouring was not completed, but the coloured pages were bright and used a lot of different colours. The art and colour pallette reminded me of Drama and The Babysitter’s Club graphic novels.
I would highly recommend this to anyone, especially a middle grader who’s interested in music and possibly wanting a tiny intro into music reading and history. It was cute and quick to read, which is appreciated between big fantasies! In the end I gave it 3.5 ⭐. I enjoyed it for what it was and glad I read it – it would be something I’d recommend to my step-neice. I’ll definitely be keeping an eye on Jade and see what else they release!
tbrandbeyond – Promotional Post
quirkybibliophile – Blogger’s Choice
oynidalovesbooks – Blogger’s Choice