Review of Miles Morales Suspended: A Spider-Man Novel

Miles Morales Suspended: A Spider-Man Novel Miles Morales Suspended: A Spider-Man Novel
by Jason Reynolds; illus. by Zeke Peña
Middle School, High School    Dlouhy/Atheneum    320 pp.
5/23    9781665918466    $19.99
e-book ed.  9781665918480    $10.99

In the previous installment (Miles Morales, rev. 9/17), sixteen-year-old Miles (“Boricua and Black and Brooklyn as hell”) was bitten by a radioactive spider, became the latest Spider-Man, and defeated the Warden, head of an ancient white supremacist organization. Now he sits in In-School Suspension (ISS) for standing up to his racist history teacher, along with classmate Tobin Rogers, who is in ISS for removing books—Baldwin, Morrison, Angelou, Angie Thomas—from the school library. Even more weirdly, Tobin was eating the pages; all that were found were the books’ spines. Add a termite infestation at school for an intriguing puzzle for Miles to solve. This sequel is more multilayered than the first installment, with action-packed digital drawings, Miles’s first-person poems, and a third-person narrative all capturing a day in the life of Miles Morales—his neighborhood, his crush on Alicia Carson, his friendship with Ganke, and his conflicts with teachers. There is room, though, for a climactic action scene in the boys’ bathroom, where a creepy monster is thrillingly unmasked

From the July/August 2023 issue of The Horn Book Magazine.

Dean Schneider

Dean Schneider teaches eighth grade English at the Ensworth School in Nashville, Tennessee.

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