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Long Distance

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From the creator of Fake Blood comes another exceptionally charming middle grade graphic novel about friendships both near and far, far away. Vega’s summer vacation is not going well. When her parents decide it’s time to pack up and leave her hometown of Portland, Oregon, behind for boring Seattle, Washington, Vega is more than upset—she’s downright miserable. Forced to lea From the creator of Fake Blood comes another exceptionally charming middle grade graphic novel about friendships both near and far, far away. Vega’s summer vacation is not going well. When her parents decide it’s time to pack up and leave her hometown of Portland, Oregon, behind for boring Seattle, Washington, Vega is more than upset—she’s downright miserable. Forced to leave her one and only best friend, Halley, behind, Vega is convinced she’ll never make another friend again. To help her settle into her new life in Seattle, her parents send Vega off to summer camp to make new friends. Except Vega is determined to get her old life back. But when her cellphone unexpectedly calls it quits and things at camp start getting stranger and stranger, Vega has no choice but to team up with her bunkmates to figure out what’s going on!


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From the creator of Fake Blood comes another exceptionally charming middle grade graphic novel about friendships both near and far, far away. Vega’s summer vacation is not going well. When her parents decide it’s time to pack up and leave her hometown of Portland, Oregon, behind for boring Seattle, Washington, Vega is more than upset—she’s downright miserable. Forced to lea From the creator of Fake Blood comes another exceptionally charming middle grade graphic novel about friendships both near and far, far away. Vega’s summer vacation is not going well. When her parents decide it’s time to pack up and leave her hometown of Portland, Oregon, behind for boring Seattle, Washington, Vega is more than upset—she’s downright miserable. Forced to leave her one and only best friend, Halley, behind, Vega is convinced she’ll never make another friend again. To help her settle into her new life in Seattle, her parents send Vega off to summer camp to make new friends. Except Vega is determined to get her old life back. But when her cellphone unexpectedly calls it quits and things at camp start getting stranger and stranger, Vega has no choice but to team up with her bunkmates to figure out what’s going on!

30 review for Long Distance

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jasmine from How Useful It Is

    A fantastic book for kids! How to make friends is definitely something everyone need including myself. I have moved away from my friends a few times and it’s hard making friends every time. I liked the steps to making friends and how each chapter showed the characters applying it. At chapter 3, “take the first step,” I thought Vega has an opportunity to make friends if she accepted Isaac’s offer to look at something but Vega refused because she still thought she’s fine with her long distance fri A fantastic book for kids! How to make friends is definitely something everyone need including myself. I have moved away from my friends a few times and it’s hard making friends every time. I liked the steps to making friends and how each chapter showed the characters applying it. At chapter 3, “take the first step,” I thought Vega has an opportunity to make friends if she accepted Isaac’s offer to look at something but Vega refused because she still thought she’s fine with her long distance friend from back home. However, the characters do live up to this chapter’s advice because activities and situations gave them the opportunities to reach out and talked to each other. I liked the mystery and problem solving. It’s a plus that the problem only got solved when others joined the siblings. It reminded readers that more minds are better than a couple. The mystery got the characters involved and they determined to solve a problem that they forgot about being awkward trying to make a friend. This book followed Vega as she said goodbye to her best friend Halley from Portland, OR because she’s moving to Seattle, WA. One of her dads has gotten a new job. They planned to stay in touch and keep their friendship long distance. Vega’s dad wanted Vega to attend a summer camp to make new friends. Vega was reluctant to but only agreed to go if her dad also made efforts to make friends too. Vega tried to contact Halley repeatedly but received no response. Vega’s fellow campers told a ghost story that got everyone on edge. At night, each person heard something and ran out. They bumped into each other and began solving a mystery together. It led them to something they totally unexpected to see. This book has steps on how to make friends by organizing each step at each chapter. Long Distance was well written, illustrated, and organized. A modern take to tween books where two dads was introduced in this story. I liked that Vega was into stargazing. It’s always great when kids has an interest other than internet/social media. I’m not hesitant to have my 9 year-old son read this book because I think Vega, Qwerty, Gemma, and Isaac can be good role models to young readers. Gemma loved to collect rocks. Loved the explanations to thunder eggs, sextant, how signals flow, etc. The story summed up nicely. Great ending! I liked the diversity in this book. A must read book for kids and I highly recommend everyone to read it. xoxo, Jasmine at www.howusefulitis.wordpress.com for more details Many thanks to Simon & Schuster for the opportunity to read and review. Please be assured that my opinions are honest.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Prabhjot Kaur

    Vega's family has moved from Portland to Seattle and she's not happy about it as she had to leave her best friend, Halley. Her dads send her to a camp to make new friends and she doesn't like the idea as she wants to keep her friendship with Halley even though it is long distance. At the camp, she meets up with other kids but she still wants to talk to Halley but there's no signal and then some spooky things happen. She along with Qwerty, Isaac and Gemma start to work on the mystery and along th Vega's family has moved from Portland to Seattle and she's not happy about it as she had to leave her best friend, Halley. Her dads send her to a camp to make new friends and she doesn't like the idea as she wants to keep her friendship with Halley even though it is long distance. At the camp, she meets up with other kids but she still wants to talk to Halley but there's no signal and then some spooky things happen. She along with Qwerty, Isaac and Gemma start to work on the mystery and along the way she makes new friends. A very cute story about dealing with moving to a new place and loneliness and making new friends but still keeping in touch with your old friends even though it is a long distance friendship. I liked the art with rich colors. I liked the mystery at the start but the end felt a little underwhelming. But I liked the message at the end. 3.75 stars

  3. 5 out of 5

    laurel [the suspected bibliophile]

    This was cute as hell. Full RTC. I received this ARC from NetGalley for an honest review

  4. 4 out of 5

    David Gibson

    The Short Version: A very cute middle school level graphic novel about loneliness and making friends with some Truman Show/Get Out vibes. It won’t break any new ground, but if it were a meal it would be a really good Grilled Cheese...and sometimes you need a good grilled cheese The Long Version: A very solid middle grade graphic novel! Vega has just moved to Seattle from Portland and is distraught over missing her best friend. Her parents want her to make new friends to get adjusted to Seattle so The Short Version: A very cute middle school level graphic novel about loneliness and making friends with some Truman Show/Get Out vibes. It won’t break any new ground, but if it were a meal it would be a really good Grilled Cheese...and sometimes you need a good grilled cheese The Long Version: A very solid middle grade graphic novel! Vega has just moved to Seattle from Portland and is distraught over missing her best friend. Her parents want her to make new friends to get adjusted to Seattle so they send her to a camp to get her out there. While at the camp things immediately start feeling off and the kid from the camp brochure, George Washington, is a bit odd. Things aren’t exactly what they seem and Vega and the new kids she’s met have to figure out what’s really going on. The graphic novel is good because it breezes along, and for the most part it feels like real middle school age children behaving in a weird situation. I especially liked that the novel explained a decent amount about astronomy and some other scientific hobbies. It definitely feels like this was written by a science nerd (I mean that with love) who was worried about making friends growing up and it’s geared toward those same type of kids. One of the best things about this is it addresses the real world issue of kids feeling uncomfortable in their own skin and worrying no one is like them or will like them. It also does this without pandering or talking down to kids which is refreshing. The novel is well paced, the artwork is simple but effective, and the novel is well laid out where it’s very clear what’s happening at all times. The biggest drawbacks are two fold. First, the antagonist is a bit erratic and could have been developed a little better. Second, there are times where it feels like it’s just short of being amazing, so it can be a bit of a let down, but it never falls below the threshold of good. Overall a solid 4 out of 5. It’s very readable, it’s very relatable even with its sci fi vibe. It has moments where it feels a little like fluff but it’s cute and cozy fluff. It touches on some real topics and doesn’t talk to children like they’re idiots. I recommend to adults and children alike Component Ratings Concept/Idea: 4.5 out of 5 Protagonist: 4.5 out of 5 Antagonist: 3 out of 5 Supporting Characters: 4.5 out of 5 Artwork: 3.5 out of 5 Layout: 4.5 out of 5 Dialogue: 4 out of 5 Character Development: 4 out of 5 Humor: 4 out of 5 Plot: 4 out of 5 Ending: 4 out of 5 Theme: 4.5 out of 5

  5. 5 out of 5

    destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]

    This was absolutely adorable and such a fun read. I feel like this would be a fantastic recommendation for any kid who's experiencing their first "long distance" friendships right now, whether it's due to relocating, the pandemic, or any other reasoning. There's a sweet message in here about how we have room to bring in new friends without forgetting the old, woven into a cute, humorous, sometimes very silly plot with a fun little twist. Plus, I have to rave a little about the diverse cast of ch This was absolutely adorable and such a fun read. I feel like this would be a fantastic recommendation for any kid who's experiencing their first "long distance" friendships right now, whether it's due to relocating, the pandemic, or any other reasoning. There's a sweet message in here about how we have room to bring in new friends without forgetting the old, woven into a cute, humorous, sometimes very silly plot with a fun little twist. Plus, I have to rave a little about the diverse cast of characters and the main character's two dads, who are precious and definitely needed more on-page time! Thank you so much to the publisher for providing me with this review copy in exchange for an honest review!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Melanie

    Thank you to Netgalley and Simon and Schuster Children's Publishing for an arc of this graphic novel! When Vega is forced to move from Portland to Seattle for her dad's new job, she is mostly worried about leaving her best friend. Her dads want her to make new friends, so they send her to a 2-week summer camp, Camp Very Best Friend. But things do not go according to plan! This is such an adorable middle grade about friendship and putting yourself out there. It also has a really sweet message about Thank you to Netgalley and Simon and Schuster Children's Publishing for an arc of this graphic novel! When Vega is forced to move from Portland to Seattle for her dad's new job, she is mostly worried about leaving her best friend. Her dads want her to make new friends, so they send her to a 2-week summer camp, Camp Very Best Friend. But things do not go according to plan! This is such an adorable middle grade about friendship and putting yourself out there. It also has a really sweet message about the expansiveness of friendship and how gaining a new friend doesn't mean replacing an old one! I also liked that this wasn't really a contemporary, as it seemed to be at the beginning. Instead, it was a bit of scifi and very out-of-this-world! Also, I loved the focus on science and digestible information about science vocabulary! Pub Date: June 29, 2021 Content Warnings Moderate: Bullying

  7. 4 out of 5

    Lata

    Missing her best friend after a reluctant move to Seattle, Vega is sent by her dads to a two-week camp, in the hope that she’ll make a few new friends. Things are increasingly weird at the camp as Vega meets and ever so slowly befriends three other kids. They begin investigating, relying on each others’ skills and interests to discover what is really going on at the camp—it’s pretty out there. I liked this story of four BIPoC kids working together and figuring out both the mystery and the solution Missing her best friend after a reluctant move to Seattle, Vega is sent by her dads to a two-week camp, in the hope that she’ll make a few new friends. Things are increasingly weird at the camp as Vega meets and ever so slowly befriends three other kids. They begin investigating, relying on each others’ skills and interests to discover what is really going on at the camp—it’s pretty out there. I liked this story of four BIPoC kids working together and figuring out both the mystery and the solutions. I would love to spend more time with Vega, Qwerty (Quan), Gemma and Isaac.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Tasha

    The author of Fake Blood returns with another fantastical graphic novel. Vega’s parents have moved her from Portland to Seattle, leaving behind her best friend. Vega loves astronomy, something she shared with her best friend. She still has her telescope, but no one to watch the stars with. To help her transition to her new home, Vega’s parents send her off to a summer camp designed to help her make new friends. Vega isn’t interested in making new friends, so she is stand offish to the other kids The author of Fake Blood returns with another fantastical graphic novel. Vega’s parents have moved her from Portland to Seattle, leaving behind her best friend. Vega loves astronomy, something she shared with her best friend. She still has her telescope, but no one to watch the stars with. To help her transition to her new home, Vega’s parents send her off to a summer camp designed to help her make new friends. Vega isn’t interested in making new friends, so she is stand offish to the other kids. As things around camp get stranger, including a camper who changes his appearance regularly to try to make friends, rocks that are speakers, no cellphone service, and really strange food, Vega must join forces with the other campers to figure out what is actually going on. Gardner’s middle-grade graphic novel is a genuine look at moving away from friends and the struggle to regain your footing and make new ones. Gardner though takes it much farther explaining the weirdness of all summer camp experiences in a fresh way. When all is revealed at the end of the book, readers will have the satisfaction of having figured it out along with Vega and the other characters. The pacing of the different elements is nicely done as is the consistent look at loneliness and friendship throughout. Gardner’s art style is bold and clear. She offers readers a diverse cast of characters, including Vega herself who is a character of color and also has two fathers for parents. The format feels larger than most with some of the images taking up the entire page with great impact. The entire book feels effortlessly modern. A perfect summer read, particularly for those who have done summer camps. Appropriate for ages 9-12.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Vanessa

    This was really cute. It reminds me a lot of the Bailey School Kids books I read while growing up but things are never caused by "normal" things in Gardner's books. Gardner takes a normal situation-dealing with moving and making new friends-and adds in a supernatural mystery. Vega is a middle school-aged girl that has to move from Portland to Seattle because one of her dads has gotten a new job there. She has to leave her best friend Halley and they promise to keep in touch, however, things go of This was really cute. It reminds me a lot of the Bailey School Kids books I read while growing up but things are never caused by "normal" things in Gardner's books. Gardner takes a normal situation-dealing with moving and making new friends-and adds in a supernatural mystery. Vega is a middle school-aged girl that has to move from Portland to Seattle because one of her dads has gotten a new job there. She has to leave her best friend Halley and they promise to keep in touch, however, things go off the rails when Halley suddenly stops texting her and Vega's dads send her to a camp to make new friends. Camp is in the middle of the woods with no cell reception, the food is bad, and all the kids are weird, plus something is really weird about the camp.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie Cooke

    Long Distance is an absolute delight! It’s funny, sweet, relatable, and out of this world 🛸

  11. 5 out of 5

    Brittany Viklund

    Super cute, that was very enjoyable!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Mary Thomas

    Omg how CUTE was this book! It has so much going for it- I loved the girls interested in STEM and seeing the main character with two dads. I predict this will go flying off the shelves in the fall, particularly for 6th graders, who will be working on making new friends. I highly recommend for middle & high school classrooms and collections!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ms. Yingling

    E ARC provided by Edelweiss Plus Vega is very unhappy when her dads move her from Portland to Seattle, especially since she has to leave her best friend Halley, who shares her love of space. To add insult to injury, they send her to a summer camp for kids who have trouble making friends. The counselors are a bit odd, and there are strange goings on in the woods as well. One camper, George, seems to have an especially close connection to the camp (he claims his parents run it, but they are never s E ARC provided by Edelweiss Plus Vega is very unhappy when her dads move her from Portland to Seattle, especially since she has to leave her best friend Halley, who shares her love of space. To add insult to injury, they send her to a summer camp for kids who have trouble making friends. The counselors are a bit odd, and there are strange goings on in the woods as well. One camper, George, seems to have an especially close connection to the camp (he claims his parents run it, but they are never seen), and changes personalities constantly-- and they are all annoying. Vega does befriend Qwerty, who is also from Portland, as well as bunkmate Gemma and her brother Isaac. There are other campers, but it is these four who come across strange technology that seems to control the counselors, and seems to be somehow connected to George. Vega is very worried about her friendship with Halley, since her phone isn't working and she is getting no messages back from her best friend, after seeing Halley post pictures of herself with some new friends. When the suspicious technology leads the campers to find out the true nature of the camp, they must convince George that friendships are possible even when people are far apart from each other, a lesson which Vega is also able to apply to her situation with Halley. Strengths: Vega doesn't think she needs to go to a camp to make friendss, but at least tries to join in to activities and not mope about Halley the entire time she is away. She's also not overly anxious about making friends, although she is angry about moving, which seems very realistic. The camp is just quirky enough to make it interesting, and the story line does take a very decided twist that I don't want to spoil. It has a good message about friendship, and shows kids connecting remotely in a way that I hope will be more historically important than a depiction of every day life. Weaknesses: The one father was only ever shown wearing a bathrobe, which seemed very odd. Isaac and Gemma were a tiny bit hard to tell apart, but on the plus side, I was not distracted by the noses! (My number one complaint about graphic novels!) What I really think: This was a bit odd, but in a fun way. It's a great mix of summer camp and science fiction. There aren't a lot of science fiction graphic novels, so include this along with Brooks' Sanity and Tallulah, Winnick's HiLo, Hatke's Zita the Spacegirl, Graley's Glitch, and Hansen's fantastic My Video Game Ate My Homework.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Eliani

    This was a strange read. It was awkward, for very specific reasons that would involve spoilers if I give too much today. Vega's family moves from Portland to Seattle, leaving the life she knew behind, but most important, her best friend. Which is the main subject of the book, friend. Vega has one friend, but she's her best friend Halley. Her parents, in their infinite wisdom, decide they are going to send her off to a "Friendship" camp to meet kids in the area and make friends. But camp is weird and This was a strange read. It was awkward, for very specific reasons that would involve spoilers if I give too much today. Vega's family moves from Portland to Seattle, leaving the life she knew behind, but most important, her best friend. Which is the main subject of the book, friend. Vega has one friend, but she's her best friend Halley. Her parents, in their infinite wisdom, decide they are going to send her off to a "Friendship" camp to meet kids in the area and make friends. But camp is weird and not your "this isn't like home" kind of different. Like something might be going on weird weird. Although, it could be the children's overactive imagination in not liking camp or trying to find something to do. Through a series of run-ins with other campers Vega finds herself a few friends. Even if she wasn't hoping to. Between her bunk mate Gemma, her brother Isaac, and Qwerty, who she keeps running into. They find themselves in a group that all finds the camp strange. Resulting in kid detectives. The dialogue and many of the interactions felt forced, which they were, but again avoiding spoilers.. Small details I did enjoy were supply images that highlighted all the items gathered for a task. (Packing for camp, going on searches) But especially, all the information out stargazing and rocks. Very information and new topics for me. I did not enjoy reading this and while I do enjoy middle grade novels, I'm not exactly the target audience. Young readers in my home would probably enjoy it, but I don't think it'll be a family favourite. **Thank you to Simon and Schuster Children's Publishing and NetGallery for an ARC in exchange for an honest review. **

  15. 5 out of 5

    Tonja Drecker

    Learning all about friendship and meeting new ones takes a quirky and out of the world path. Vega isn't exactly thrilled that her parents have moved to Seattle for work, and she's left her best friend, Halley, behind. Not only will she miss her but making friends is never easy. It's basically impossible. To help her smooth into things, her family sends her off to camp. Here, things seem to get worse. Her phone dies, Halley appears to have met new friends now that Vega's gone, the camp counselors Learning all about friendship and meeting new ones takes a quirky and out of the world path. Vega isn't exactly thrilled that her parents have moved to Seattle for work, and she's left her best friend, Halley, behind. Not only will she miss her but making friends is never easy. It's basically impossible. To help her smooth into things, her family sends her off to camp. Here, things seem to get worse. Her phone dies, Halley appears to have met new friends now that Vega's gone, the camp counselors are weirder than weird, and things just get stranger from there. Friendship, finding new ones, and trusting old are key themes in these pages, but instead of taking a boring, ordinary, contemporary twist, this book heads in a slightly unexpected direction. The author lets the reader get to know Vega and her family a bit before sending her off to camp. She comes across as a very normal girl, and it's not hard to understand her fears and doubts. Her problems with finding friends or trusting herself to meet people is something many readers will sympathize with, too. It's been awhile since I've read a middle grade book, which hits upon the summer camp theme. This one adds a fresh layer as it takes a really quirky twist...and this definitely gave it an original and fun direction. The science fiction direction is odd but works wonderfully. It's easy to read, moves a long at a steady pace, and takes turns a reader wouldn't expect. And that all in a easy-to-read, graphic novel form. I received an ARC and found the take original.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Thompson McLeod

    Available June 29, 2021 simultaneous release both in hardcover and paperback When twelve-year old Vega's family moves from Portland to Seattle, she's not happy. She's missing her life, her school and her best friend Hailey. The girls text and Facetime but it's not the same as being together. Fearing Hailey has replaced her already, Vega mopes around he house. Not even her telescope can calm her, so her parents decide to send her to summer camp to meet "new friends." At the camp, Vega's phone quits Available June 29, 2021 simultaneous release both in hardcover and paperback When twelve-year old Vega's family moves from Portland to Seattle, she's not happy. She's missing her life, her school and her best friend Hailey. The girls text and Facetime but it's not the same as being together. Fearing Hailey has replaced her already, Vega mopes around he house. Not even her telescope can calm her, so her parents decide to send her to summer camp to meet "new friends." At the camp, Vega's phone quits working. Now she can't reach Hailey at all. She decides to write a real letter and send it, but she makes the mistake of not mailing it herself. It's hard to know who to trust as the camp gets stranger and stranger. Vega, Gemma and Querty discover speakers in rocks and worry who's watching them and why.The kids notice there's no birds or squirrels near the camp. Vega can't find the North Star or any stars because clouds obscure the sky every night. Three friends in the woods at a camp they don't trust and strange things are happening to the sky. What could go wrong? You'll have to discover on your own and you won't expect the twists! My favorite character is Qwerty. Quirky, strange, funny, Long Distance is bound to be a big hit among graphic novel fans. Recommended ages ten and up.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    Seattle, Washington is not Portland, Oregon. This is a fact Vega does not need to be reminded of. Even though her new bedroom has a good window for her telescope, there is a lot of light pollution to interfere with her stargazing. And her best friend, Halley, is 174.2 miles away. In Portland. Where Vega wishes she still lived. But her dads have an answer for her loneliness--Camp Very Best Friend. Reluctantly she packs her bag, and a brightly-colored van arrives to transport her to the place that Seattle, Washington is not Portland, Oregon. This is a fact Vega does not need to be reminded of. Even though her new bedroom has a good window for her telescope, there is a lot of light pollution to interfere with her stargazing. And her best friend, Halley, is 174.2 miles away. In Portland. Where Vega wishes she still lived. But her dads have an answer for her loneliness--Camp Very Best Friend. Reluctantly she packs her bag, and a brightly-colored van arrives to transport her to the place that will hopefully make Seattle feel a little more like home. Unfortunately, there is more to this camp than just cold, spongy bacon and George Washington, who is athletic one day, a bad boy the next, and a hipster musician the day after that. Vega and her new friends will need to work as a team to uncover the secrets of Camp Very Best Friend and find a way to get everyone home safely. THOUGHTS: Fans of Whitney Gardner’s Fake Blood will enjoy Long Distance. With themes of loneliness and friendship, readers may think they are getting just another story about a sad girl with no friends. The climactic twist, along with STEM and science fiction elements, give this book that something extra that will make it popular with students. With a diverse group of characters, including Vega and her two dads, this graphic novel is subtly inclusive and a perfect addition to the graphic novel section of any middle school library.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Helen

    Vega and her family are relocating from Portland to Seattle due to her father’s new job. Vega isn’t looking forward to moving to Seattle and leaving her best friend, Halley. Vega’s Dad convinces her to attend a summer camp so she can make some new friends in Seattle. Bummed and hesitant, Vega reluctantly agrees to attend Camp Very Best Friend. Vega starts to befriend Qwerty (a tech whiz), Gemma and Isaac (rock collectors), but strange things start to happen at camp. I thought Long Distance was ju Vega and her family are relocating from Portland to Seattle due to her father’s new job. Vega isn’t looking forward to moving to Seattle and leaving her best friend, Halley. Vega’s Dad convinces her to attend a summer camp so she can make some new friends in Seattle. Bummed and hesitant, Vega reluctantly agrees to attend Camp Very Best Friend. Vega starts to befriend Qwerty (a tech whiz), Gemma and Isaac (rock collectors), but strange things start to happen at camp. I thought Long Distance was just going to be about Vega and Halley’s long distance friendship, but it turned out to be more than just that. I was not prepared for a sci-fi graphic novel. I had my daughter read it as well, and she was also surprised by the sci-fi elements in the story. I’m not a huge fan of sci-fi per se, but I did like how the author tied in the sci-fi parts with the story about friendship and fitting in. I love graphic novels that make boring subjects interesting so I appreciated how the story incorporated some astronomy facts. Readers who love stories about friendship and sci-fi fans would love this middle-grade graphic novel.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Kristen

    Edelweiss+ provided me a DRC of this book in exchange for an honest review. I didn't actually read the blurb on this one, so I was expecting a cute little story about making new friends at camp. I mean, it IS actually a cute little story about making new friends at camp...but with a nice little mysterious twist thrown in. Vega is not happy about moving to Portland and leaving her best friend behind, and a camp for making friends is definitely not the answer. Things get strange pretty quickly with Edelweiss+ provided me a DRC of this book in exchange for an honest review. I didn't actually read the blurb on this one, so I was expecting a cute little story about making new friends at camp. I mean, it IS actually a cute little story about making new friends at camp...but with a nice little mysterious twist thrown in. Vega is not happy about moving to Portland and leaving her best friend behind, and a camp for making friends is definitely not the answer. Things get strange pretty quickly with creepy counselors, strange technology, and camper George--who changes his personality every day and seems desperate to be friends. I loved our cast of characters: narrator Vega, brainy chatterbox Qwerty, twins Gemma and Isaac, and who-is-he-really George. There's enough humor along side the mystery, and there are plenty of issues kids will relate to: moving, making new friends, feeling left out or different. Overall a fun graphic novel that will definitely be added to my library shelves.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Andrew

    Vega isn't thrilled about moving to Seattle when one of her dads gets a new job, especially because she'll be leaving behind her best (and only) friend, Halley. Despite her insistence that she doesn't need any new friends, her parents send her to a camp specifically intended for forging new friendships. The other kids in attendance aren't too keen on the idea either, but as Vega and the other campers start noticing weird anomalies in the forest and observing the bizarre behaviors of the staff, t Vega isn't thrilled about moving to Seattle when one of her dads gets a new job, especially because she'll be leaving behind her best (and only) friend, Halley. Despite her insistence that she doesn't need any new friends, her parents send her to a camp specifically intended for forging new friendships. The other kids in attendance aren't too keen on the idea either, but as Vega and the other campers start noticing weird anomalies in the forest and observing the bizarre behaviors of the staff, they know something isn't right... The only thing to do is band together and discover the source of the strange happenings around them. Long Distance is a funny and relatable graphic novel that realistically depicts new and sometimes awkward friendships while also managing to take the storytelling up a notch to a whole new planet... well, maybe just a spaceship. Fans of Raina Telgemeier and Svetlana Chmakova that don't mind a sci-fi twist will delight in this new standalone!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Cindy • leavemetomybooks•

    This was an unexpectedly and delightfully weird middle grade graphic novel. Vega's parents make her leave her one and only friend in Portland to move to Seattle, and then immediately ship her off to summer camp to make new friends. Strange and mysterious things keep happening at camp, so Vega and a few of her fellow campers investigate. This is a cute story about friendship and how it's ok to have more than one friend -- but with a strange twist. This will be appealing to fans of Kristin Gudsnuk This was an unexpectedly and delightfully weird middle grade graphic novel. Vega's parents make her leave her one and only friend in Portland to move to Seattle, and then immediately ship her off to summer camp to make new friends. Strange and mysterious things keep happening at camp, so Vega and a few of her fellow campers investigate. This is a cute story about friendship and how it's ok to have more than one friend -- but with a strange twist. This will be appealing to fans of Kristin Gudsnuk (Making Friends), Shannon Hale (Real Friends), Svetlana Chmakova (Awkward), and (of course) Raina Telgemeier, Highly recommended for grades 3+. * thank you to NetGalley and Simon & Schuster’s Children’s Publishing for the review ARC. Available June 29, 2021

  22. 5 out of 5

    Mary

    I am a big fan of Whitney Gardner's middle grade graphic novels so I was really excited to read this! The art is great, Very colorful and detailed but not too detailed. Vega has to move from Portland to Seattle and she's worried about leaving her best friend. Her two dads sign her up for a summer camp, Very Best Friend, which is guaranteed to have her making new friends in no time. However, when Vega gets there she notices that the counselors are a bit odd, the sky is always cloudy, and no one s I am a big fan of Whitney Gardner's middle grade graphic novels so I was really excited to read this! The art is great, Very colorful and detailed but not too detailed. Vega has to move from Portland to Seattle and she's worried about leaving her best friend. Her two dads sign her up for a summer camp, Very Best Friend, which is guaranteed to have her making new friends in no time. However, when Vega gets there she notices that the counselors are a bit odd, the sky is always cloudy, and no one seems happy to be there. The twist in the book was unexpected but fun (I won't ruin it here). I think children will enjoy this book for the friendships, mystery, and fun! (Read a digital ARC via Netgalley.)

  23. 4 out of 5

    Christine

    I liked the art style, particularly in the exterior scenes set in the forest at camp. I appreciated the diverse cast of characters. I enjoyed the lesson Vega learned about friendship and long-distance friend relationships. [Hailey] just made a new friend. And that's okay. Friendship is a renewable resource. You can't run out, you can always make more. . . . Long-distance friends are real friends. You just have to make the effort. However, I did not like the plot twist about the summer camp. (vie I liked the art style, particularly in the exterior scenes set in the forest at camp. I appreciated the diverse cast of characters. I enjoyed the lesson Vega learned about friendship and long-distance friend relationships. [Hailey] just made a new friend. And that's okay. Friendship is a renewable resource. You can't run out, you can always make more. . . . Long-distance friends are real friends. You just have to make the effort. However, I did not like the plot twist about the summer camp. (view spoiler)[It was actually set in outer space. The counselors were electronic and the one of the campers was an alien. (hide spoiler)] The twist was too weird for me and I disliked reading the book after its reveal — 2 stars.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    This was a cute, middle-grade graphic novel. Nova and her dads are moving to Seattle. She is devastated to leave behind her best friend. In an attempt to help Nova make new friends, her dads sign her up for Camp Very Best Friend. Once Nova arrives, everything seems just a little bit off. Nova, Quan, Isaac, and Gemma start to unravel the mysteries of the camp and realize that nothing is as it seems and they are much further away from home than they originally thought. Despite all of their differen This was a cute, middle-grade graphic novel. Nova and her dads are moving to Seattle. She is devastated to leave behind her best friend. In an attempt to help Nova make new friends, her dads sign her up for Camp Very Best Friend. Once Nova arrives, everything seems just a little bit off. Nova, Quan, Isaac, and Gemma start to unravel the mysteries of the camp and realize that nothing is as it seems and they are much further away from home than they originally thought. Despite all of their differences, Nova learns that "friendship is a renewable resource." I love this idea! Just because you make a new friend, doesn't diminish older friendships. Overall, this is a solid 5 star read!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Elia

    An absolutely adorable story about friendship and starting over with cute illustrations and a little bit of learning thrown in. Vega has just moved to Seattle from Portland and her dads sign her up for a camp that promises to help introverted kids make new friends. Vega doesn't want to because she has a best friend back in Portland and she thinks this is more than enough. However, when things start to get weird at camp Vega has to team up with computer expert Querty, her bunkmate Gemma and Gemma An absolutely adorable story about friendship and starting over with cute illustrations and a little bit of learning thrown in. Vega has just moved to Seattle from Portland and her dads sign her up for a camp that promises to help introverted kids make new friends. Vega doesn't want to because she has a best friend back in Portland and she thinks this is more than enough. However, when things start to get weird at camp Vega has to team up with computer expert Querty, her bunkmate Gemma and Gemma's twin brother to figure out why the camp is so utterly bizarre, and why the bacon is so cold and squshy.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Elise

    I know objectively that young readers will enjoy this book. I personally didn't enjoy it that much, but it's not written for me (as an adult OR me as a child...I would never have liked this book.) This book has a heavy sci-fi element to it. I didn't realize that until halfway through the book. I just thought it was another graphic novel set a summer camp. Boy was I wrong. Never go into a sci-fi book thinking you're just getting a contemporary story. What a letdown. If you like a supernatural ele I know objectively that young readers will enjoy this book. I personally didn't enjoy it that much, but it's not written for me (as an adult OR me as a child...I would never have liked this book.) This book has a heavy sci-fi element to it. I didn't realize that until halfway through the book. I just thought it was another graphic novel set a summer camp. Boy was I wrong. Never go into a sci-fi book thinking you're just getting a contemporary story. What a letdown. If you like a supernatural element in your stories, you'll enjoy this book. It's a nice story about friendship, but it wasn't for me.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Gretchen

    Vega's dad gets a new job and moves the family from Portland to Seattle. Vega is unhappy about this because this moves her away from her best friend. To make things worse, her dads insist on sending her to a summer camp that promises to help her make friends. When she arrives at camp, it soon becomes apparent that something is off. The food is awful, the counselors are weird, and the boy on the brochure, George, keeps changing his look and skills. Ironically, the camp does end up helping Vega ma Vega's dad gets a new job and moves the family from Portland to Seattle. Vega is unhappy about this because this moves her away from her best friend. To make things worse, her dads insist on sending her to a summer camp that promises to help her make friends. When she arrives at camp, it soon becomes apparent that something is off. The food is awful, the counselors are weird, and the boy on the brochure, George, keeps changing his look and skills. Ironically, the camp does end up helping Vega make friends, just not in the way she was expecting. #NetGalley

  28. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    An out-of-this-world summer at camp shows Vega that friendship is more complicated--and wonderful--than she thought. And it doesn't matter how far away from a friend you are--long distance friends are just as real and important as in-person friends. This was a cute middle-grade graphic novel about an introverted girl at a camp that is not at all what it first appears. I don't want to spoil any of the twists, but it's safe to say this is not just an ordinary summer camp book. I really enjoyed the An out-of-this-world summer at camp shows Vega that friendship is more complicated--and wonderful--than she thought. And it doesn't matter how far away from a friend you are--long distance friends are just as real and important as in-person friends. This was a cute middle-grade graphic novel about an introverted girl at a camp that is not at all what it first appears. I don't want to spoil any of the twists, but it's safe to say this is not just an ordinary summer camp book. I really enjoyed the emphasis on astronomy and science and the positive message about friendship.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Tina

    When space-nerd Vega moves from Portland to Seattle, leaving her best and only friend behind, her parents send her off to a summer camp especially designed to make new ones. But strange happenings at the camp have Vega and the other campers suspicious and they soon set out to get to the bottom of it. This soft middle grade sci-fi-adventure reminds us that, “friendship is a renewable resource. You can’t run out, you can always make more.” Thank you to Netgalley and Simon and Schuster Children's Pu When space-nerd Vega moves from Portland to Seattle, leaving her best and only friend behind, her parents send her off to a summer camp especially designed to make new ones. But strange happenings at the camp have Vega and the other campers suspicious and they soon set out to get to the bottom of it. This soft middle grade sci-fi-adventure reminds us that, “friendship is a renewable resource. You can’t run out, you can always make more.” Thank you to Netgalley and Simon and Schuster Children's Publishing for the eArc!

  30. 5 out of 5

    tawnie

    Another fun graphic novel from Gardner. Although I am not the target audience, I think the themes of being torn away from friends and trying to make new friends will resonate with kids, these are still things I can relate to today. There's a little bit of mystery and danger, but not so much that it's scary. I love the nerdiness of the characters and the little educational side bars, and the art is colorful and expressive. Oh and there is at least one little easter egg from another of Gardner's b Another fun graphic novel from Gardner. Although I am not the target audience, I think the themes of being torn away from friends and trying to make new friends will resonate with kids, these are still things I can relate to today. There's a little bit of mystery and danger, but not so much that it's scary. I love the nerdiness of the characters and the little educational side bars, and the art is colorful and expressive. Oh and there is at least one little easter egg from another of Gardner's books I saw so far.

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