Thursday, April 3, 2014

All About Middle Grade Review: Vin and the Dorky Duet


Vin and the Dorky Duet by Maggie Lyons, August, 2012. 94 pages. Published by Halo Publishing International. Source: author.
When he walks through the door and sees the sharky grin on his sister’s face, Vin rightly suspects Meg is hatching a plot. Worse still, he’s central to the outcome. Meg tells him everyone expects him to play her duet for trumpet and piano at the student concert. Vin is horrified.

His only escape is to persuade another trumpet player to take his place. Meg has the hunky Brad Stewart in mind, and she challenges Vin to introduce her to him. To do that he must first befriend Brad’s nerdy brother, Eyeballs, the last person Vin wants to be friends with until Meg’s promise of a David Beckham autographed soccer jersey changes the seventh-grader’s mind. He has five days to accomplish his mission—Operation BS.

Vin’s game plan, thwarted by exploding fish tanks, magnetic compost heaps, man-eating bubble baths, and other disasters ultimately succeeds, but not exactly as he expects …
First Sentence:
I knew as soon as I walked through the door they'd hatched some kind of plan.


While Vin and the Dorky Duet was incredibly short, I enjoyed the hilarity of Vin trying his best to fulfill Meg's request to earn the signed Beckham jersey. The things he went through just to get that jersey are both funny and mind-boggling, especially with how things turned out in the end.

Again, Maggie Lyons has written an incredibly funny book. This time featuring the Vin and Meg, two siblings with different plans to get what they want. While I found Meg to be quite the devious older sister, I enjoyed seeing the trouble she caused Vin because it was so funny. Even though I generally prefer siblings who get along, it was interesting to see that while they were pretty annoyed most the time about being siblings that they in fact did not hate each other. You could say I loved the poking fun at each other that can only come about when you have siblings.
    As one with three sisters of my own, I can say that Maggie Lyons did a pretty bang up job of creating a true relationship between siblings in her book. Vin and the Dorky Duet definitely took a different approach to portraying sibling interaction, and that is one of the reasons that I found myself enjoying this one as much as I did.

What I enjoyed most about Vin and the Skory Duet would have to be Maggie Lyons writing and her portrayal of the siblings. Even though they may not have gotten along perfectly, I really enjoyed the quips between the two and seeing Vin try to get Brad to take his place in the duet with his sister. It was interesting to watch him try to bring it up time and again, and yet, managing to get waylaid by some unforeseen problem with his plans to achieve victory over and over again. Seriously though, I thought Ms. Lyons did a great job creating believable conflict between the siblings without making them hate each other.

Hmm, the only really bad thing about the book is that in the end I felt bad for Vin. I just felt bad for him because after all the trouble he went to things ended up quite differently then he thought. While it made me feel for him, it was an enjoyable twist to the expected ending.

Final Verdict: Vin and the Dorky Duet- A hilarious look at siblings and the things they convince each other to do. Definitely wroth checking out, especially if you know what it's like to have a sibling(s).

Vin and the Dorky Duet earns 4 out of 5 griffins

This book was receive din exchange for an honest review.

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