The Tapper Twins Run For President

tapper-twins-200-pixMy own flesh and blood accused me of steal­ing the oth­er day. When it was I, not she, who pro­cured the book, and I, not she, who was part way through it…and then she stole it from me! Hid it, real­ly, inten­tion­al­ly or un- beneath her bed. I prac­ti­cal­ly had to clean her room to find it. It’s gone back and forth this whole week. (I’ve been try­ing to extend my read­ing of it and not just gulp it down all at once — I sus­pect she’s doing the same.) Last night I fin­ished, and I put it in my To-Do pile (casu­al­ly, under a few things) so that I could write about it today.

And it was gone this morn­ing. I imme­di­ate­ly went across the hall to my daughter’s room. Found it after a brief search. I con­sid­er myself lucky, because the book­mark indi­cates she’s almost done — I’m sur­prised she didn’t squir­rel it away in her backpack.

Speak­ing of squir­rel, there’s a squir­rel in The Tap­per Twins Run For Pres­i­dent. But she’s not to that part yet, I see from the book­mark. The squir­rel is pret­ty much the cher­ry on top of some pret­ty elab­o­rate icing and sprin­kles on a very fun cup­cake. (Clau­dia Tap­per, one of the Tap­per twins, uses many slight­ly over-the-top metaphors — I think it’s catching.)

I’ve writ­ten about The Tap­per Twins before; but I must again, because this book has the pow­er to rekin­dle your sense of humor about pol­i­tics in the midst of this hor­ren­dous cam­paign sea­son we are cur­rent­ly sub­ject­ed to. The premise is this: Stu­dent Gov­ern­ment elec­tions are tak­ing place at Cul­vert Prep and both Clau­dia and Reese Tap­per wind up run­ning for sixth grade president.

As it says on the author Geoff Rodkey’s web­site: A pres­i­den­tial elec­tion between a thought­ful, pol­i­cy-mind­ed female and a guy with­out a shred of expe­ri­ence who’s con­stant­ly spout­ing off the first thing that comes to his mind. The real­ly great thing? You can laugh at this one with­out expe­ri­enc­ing a gnaw­ing sense of exis­ten­tial dread for the future of Amer­i­can democ­ra­cy. (Watch the 42 sec­ond trail­er!)

It is prac­ti­cal­ly an alle­go­ry, friends. And it’s hilar­i­ous. And your kids can read it with­out you fear­ing “mature themes.” Clau­dia and Reese are so well drawn — as are their friends. The very best of the mid­dle school mind and tem­pera­ment, I assure you. There is zani­ness (not just the squir­rel) through­out and you can’t help but keep reading.

As I said the last time I wrote about the Tap­per Twins, this is not the usu­al kind of book I’m drawn to. It’s part screen-play, part mixed media, part…scrapbook, maybe. When I stray off of the tra­di­tion­al nov­el form, which I don’t do that often, it’s gen­er­al­ly some­thing in the epis­to­lary genre. The Tap­per Twins offers some­thing else all togeth­er — these books have expand­ed my hori­zons considerably.

Do your­self a favor — find a copy and then find a mid­dle-school (or old­er) kid and fight over who gets to read it first. It’s a quick read and a fun one. This is the third Tap­per Twins book I’ve more or less inhaled — dit­to for Dar­ling Daugh­ter. It makes me smile to even say Tap­per Twins. I’m thrilled to see anoth­er is coming.

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