Please Don't Tell My Parents I've Got Henchmen (Please Don't Tell My Parents, #3)
What would middle school be like if half your classmates had super powers? It's time for Penny Akk to find out. Her latest (failed) attempt to become a superhero has inspired the rest of the kids in her school to reveal their own powers.Now, all of her relationships are changing. She has a not-at-all-secret admirer, who wants to be Penny's partner almost as much as she wants to be Penny's rival. The meanest girl in school has gained super powers and lost her mind. Can Penny help her find a better one? Can she help an aging supervillain connect with his daughter, and mend the broken hearts of two of the most powerful people in the world? And in all this, where will she find time for her own supervillainous fun, or even more dangerous, to start dating?It's going to be a long, strange semester.

Please Don't Tell My Parents I've Got Henchmen (Please Don't Tell My Parents, #3) Details

TitlePlease Don't Tell My Parents I've Got Henchmen (Please Don't Tell My Parents, #3)
Author
FormatPaperback
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseFeb 8th, 2016
PublisherCuriosity Quills Press
ISBN1620074370
ISBN-139781620074374
Number of pages318 pages
Rating
GenreComics, Superheroes, Science Fiction, Fantasy, Young Adult

Please Don't Tell My Parents I've Got Henchmen (Please Don't Tell My Parents, #3) Review

  • Yzabel Ginsberg
    March 28, 2016
    [I received a copy of this book from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.]I have been following this series from its first volume, which I really liked, so I'll admit to being slightly biased. I like the main characters, the world of superheroes and villains developed here—everybody knows they exist, with more or less admiration and acceptance of what they do, and with a subverted Masquerade trope (supers don't hide per se, but there's an unspoken rule about “not getting personal”, t [I received a copy of this book from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.]I have been following this series from its first volume, which I really liked, so I'll admit to being slightly biased. I like the main characters, the world of superheroes and villains developed here—everybody knows they exist, with more or less admiration and acceptance of what they do, and with a subverted Masquerade trope (supers don't hide per se, but there's an unspoken rule about “not getting personal”, that is, not revealing people's day-to-day identities).And I'm feeling torn, because I liked this third volume, yet also found it kind of weak in terms of plot. Perhaps because it's more focused on a part of Penny et al.'s life we hadn't really seen yet, that is, growing up, and finding out that dividing one's life between villainous activities, trying to become a hero, and just good old norma activities, is time-consuming and difficult. In that regard, it was interesting. Other kids are making their coming out, refusing to hide their powers any longer, and a wind of acceptance is blowing over the school. The club activities, the new lair, those were both fun to read about, and also leading to more thoughtful considerations.I quite liked Marcia's development, although I wish we had been given some more information about how exactly she turned out like that (“she has the scrolls” is a bit of a shortcut: how did she survive them?). Her powers are of a kind that I find fascinating, that is, would you stay sane if nothing could hurt you, or not for long? Or would you start experimenting, looking for the one thing that may do you harm? It made me think of Claire's experiments at the beginning of the “Heroes” series, only in a more.. unhealthy way. But then, I much prefer this Marcia to theuppity girl from book 1.Quite a few things that left me frustrated, though:- This is really more a “slice of life” book, without any real plot apart from the loose “teenagers gathering and developing their powers”. As mentioned above, it allowed to delve deeper into our three wannabe-heroes (or wannabe-villains?) problems and potential choices for the future, and to reveal more about existing characters, like Bull and his family. On the other hand, there was no real main plot here, ideas would spring up and unfurl into short events that would then die down, and good plot devices were lost in the middle. What about the robot? (Having her around more would've been fun... and I think we could do with a new Vera by now.) What exactly happened to Barbara to make her another kind of unpredictable, but perhaps still as dangerous as her sister? Also, we're having many secondary characters introduced (the club) and this is screen time may have been better used on the Inscrutable Machine (who didn't do enough villainy to my liking—I want to see them dostuff back together more often!).- Still no real insight as to Ray's family, which makes his position hard to relate to: it seems his parents would hate him if they were to learn he's a super, and so he both wants to stay and to leave... but that's only what we're told. We never get to see his family. We don't know what they're like. Regular people, from what I rememberfrom book 1... or not so much? Are they heroes or villains in disguise? Or maybe people who got badly hurt in the past by some hero or villain, and now they despise everything “super”? I really, really want to know, and I really hope there's more to Ray's folks than the little we'vebeen told so far. It can't be so simple. And if it has to be “that bad”, then I want to see it, too.- Are the Akks so blind as to their daughter's activities? Or are they pretending not to know? Deluding themselves? By now, this is more than troublesome. Maybe Penny's father might get away with this (scientist more focused on his own inventions, and all that), but it's difficult to keep seeing the Audit as this calculating, probabilities- and statistics-wielding ex-hero, as this sort of human computer, when she's so oblivious to what's so obvious. The “bumbling blind adult” trope isn't working.Honestly, I don't like giving less than 3 stars to this book. But...Nevertheless, this novel raises some interesting questions and potential future arcs at the end, and I'd still want to see those in a next installment, if it meant more antics from the trio. Among other things: what is the Inscrutable Machine to do, to choose, considering that they seem to be really talented at villainous stuff (with the good deeds backfiring), yet still find themselves instinctively helping people as well as causing mayhem? And what is Spider up to?
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  • C.T. Phipps
    February 11, 2016
    The Don't Tell My Parents series is one I am deeply enamoured of. It's on my list along with Ex-Heroes, Wearing the Cape, and Confessions of a D-List Supervillain for some of the best superhero fiction out there (along with my Supervillainy Saga of course). The books are neither dark or especially deep but they're fun. The premise for the series as a whole is Penny Akk, daughter of superheroes Brainy Akk and the Audit, has discovered her superpowers at puberty (age 13). This results in her atte The Don't Tell My Parents series is one I am deeply enamoured of. It's on my list along with Ex-Heroes, Wearing the Cape, and Confessions of a D-List Supervillain for some of the best superhero fiction out there (along with my Supervillainy Saga of course). The books are neither dark or especially deep but they're fun. The premise for the series as a whole is Penny Akk, daughter of superheroes Brainy Akk and the Audit, has discovered her superpowers at puberty (age 13). This results in her attempting to become a superhero but accidentally getting herself branded as a supervillain. With her friends Ray and Claire, both getting superpowers from her science experiments, she becomes the leader of the Inscrutable Machine, the world's youngest supervillain team. This episode picks up after the rather lackluster Don't Tell My Parents I Blew Up the Moon and returns to the more interesting environment of Los Angeles. The story opens with Penny trying for a second time to become a superhero, only to get herself busted as her parents justifiably don't want her endangering herself at such a young age. The focus of this episode is less on the Inscrutable Machine building a army of henchmen than the slow transformation of their school into a West Coast version of Professor Xavier's Westchester Academy. It seems every other student was hiding powers of one sort or another and this leads them to forming a fanclub to see how they could develop their abilities to fight (or commit crime). All around the newly-outed-as-a-superhuman-but-not-as-a-supervillain Penny. Don't Tell My Parents I've Got Henchmen is a significant improvement over its predecessor and has a lot more of the fun, whimsical style I came to love in the original book. It also doesn't have much of a plot as compared to the previous book, which is both a blessing as well as a curse. This is mostly a series of vignettes about Penny and her life, following her group as they try to figure out what they're going to do with their abilities. This entry in the series moves from silly adventure to silly adventure with getting a supervillain to reconcile with his family, a field trip to supervillain-filled Chinatown, and dealing with a Lara Croft-esque adventurer trying to break into an old tomb. There's also a nice little storyline about poor Generic Girl trying to deal with the fact she doesn't want to be a superhero but feels like she's obligated to use her powers for good. There's some interesting story developments in the aforementioned Generic Girl, Marcia, and the relationships among the main cast. However, the book suffers a bit from not having a real focus to build the story around. In the first book, it was the Inscrutable Machine accepting they were supervillains. In the second book, it was the larger plot with the steampunk Jupiter colonists. Here? There's not much going on. There's some definitely entertaining bits, don't get me wrong. I also like the addition of a LGBT character to the main cast. I also like the new character of Bull who is one of the world's most experienced supervillains but a man who has decided to retire to teach kids. I am eager to see where things go from there. I do hope the next volume has a little higher stakes, though, especially as the cast grows older. Despite this, I very much enjoyed this book and am looking forward to the next installment of the series. The Inscrutable Machine remains the most likable supervillains you're going to find in a Young Adult series. I don't foresee that as changing. Richard Roberts has an amazing talent for creating engaging whimsical characters who manage to be cute without being saccharine. Penelope Akk is the Princess of Adolescent Supervillainy. *puts a five in the Princess jar*8.5/10
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  • Coyora Dokusho
    February 9, 2016
    It was glorious!!!! Glorious!!!! (I woke up at 1 am to start reading it - my alarm went off at midnight but then I slapped it... but my dreaming self was excited enough about the book to wake me up about 45 minutes later!! I then passed out again about 5 am or so, and managed to finish before I scraped myself out of bed and dragged myself to work... which was horrible... horrrrrrrible!!!! XD)I feel like it was definitely a bridge book leading to new! and exciting! developments in the future but It was glorious!!!! Glorious!!!! (I woke up at 1 am to start reading it - my alarm went off at midnight but then I slapped it... but my dreaming self was excited enough about the book to wake me up about 45 minutes later!! I then passed out again about 5 am or so, and managed to finish before I scraped myself out of bed and dragged myself to work... which was horrible... horrrrrrrible!!!! XD)I feel like it was definitely a bridge book leading to new! and exciting! developments in the future but it was awesome enough reading about it right then as well. What happened at the end made me want to read the whole thing over again to see if I could pick up *clues*... As always the characters and plot are engaging and funny and I'm left dying for the next book....
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  • Sean Duggan
    February 10, 2016
    Finished the book last night. It was like eating a sugary snack. I loved it all throughout, and then afterwards, I felt vaguely dissatisfied. The book seemed to lack focus. A lot of new characters popping up and days and weeks just kind of passing by... the latter actually kind of makes sense in retrospect since part of the plot of the book is how, as you grow up, outside responsibilities leave you less time to just hang around with your friends. But the new characters... take, for example, the Finished the book last night. It was like eating a sugary snack. I loved it all throughout, and then afterwards, I felt vaguely dissatisfied. The book seemed to lack focus. A lot of new characters popping up and days and weeks just kind of passing by... the latter actually kind of makes sense in retrospect since part of the plot of the book is how, as you grow up, outside responsibilities leave you less time to just hang around with your friends. But the new characters... take, for example, the illicit archaeologist who just sort of shows up in the museum, gets introduced, gets an explanation of who she is, and then completely vanishes after Mourning Dove shows up. I felt a bit the same way with Bull's extended family. They felt like the author has character sheets from an RPG campaign and he wanted to make sure that he got all of the character notes into the book despite them being there and gone.I dd like the hints that Penny's power is maturing such as when she builds the puzzle cube without blacking out, or even being really aware that she's building something super-sciencey. And Ray's family situation shows that there are some things that neither love nor super-powers can fix. The Audit still not picking up on who Penny is is odd with my bet being on a willful disregarding of facts due to confirmation bias and the disinterest in the chaos caused by the kids dipping into supervillainy is also really weird... you'd think they'd at least have someone looking into the crime scenes. I know there's some ambiguity about whether to treat kid supervillains as adults or kids from the whole Inscrutable Machine fiasco, but it feels like they went from seriously considering it to completely ignoring it.Overall, it's a good book. But, like the second book, it fails to clear the bar that the first book raised.
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  • Fangs for the Fantasy
    March 14, 2016
    Penny’s career as a supervillain is in jeopardy with parental interference – but there’s a more complex battle happening at school. More and more of Penny’s contemporaries are deciding to be open with their super powers. A club is formed – and of course Penny is picked to lead itBut this points to a whole cultural shift for the city as people are now wearing their powers openly, the more alien super-powered beings are now able to be join the community and it comes with a whole lot of more comple Penny’s career as a supervillain is in jeopardy with parental interference – but there’s a more complex battle happening at school. More and more of Penny’s contemporaries are deciding to be open with their super powers. A club is formed – and of course Penny is picked to lead itBut this points to a whole cultural shift for the city as people are now wearing their powers openly, the more alien super-powered beings are now able to be join the community and it comes with a whole lot of more complex questions: like who these kids want to be and what it actually means to be a super powered beingThis book seems to be covering a lot more serious issues than the previous two – it has grown up a bit from the previous incarnations of the story.When Penny started to gather a huge fanclub following of fellow superhero kids at school, I wondered if the Infernal Machine was going to become an army.But, it was deeper than that. It instead used all of these kids to ask a lot of difficult questions and broaden the world beyond being just a zany setting of hilarious, almost comical superhero/villain fightsLike what goes into the choice of whether to become a superhero or a supervillain? Which do these kids want to be? Why? It may seem simple but then we see Marcia, poor, tortured, ill Marcia who speaks out of the perfection and repression that comes with heroism. We see kids who have powers that aren’t pretty and just don’t fit neatly into hero themes – including heroes rejecting their superpowered kids because their powers are “thematically” wrongAnd what about those kids who do have super powers that just don’t lend themselves to combat? Not ever super power is actually an ideal battle ability. Nor is every altered form ideal for fighting – the kid who looks like they’re made of living glass may be intimidating and kind of awesome, but they’re also waaay too brittle to be involved in combat. In between the super powered fighting, the kids learning to use their powers, the kids all learning the rules of the world they’re in there’s a lot of looking at what it really means to be a super powered kid.There’s those kids whose powers change their appearance – how many of them have to be home schooled because they’re considered to be too alien to actually be part of the community? How many kids dye their hair or cover their skin to hide some non-human feature? And, as the super power club grows, how much does the culture change that more and more of them stop hidingYes, there’s a hefty analogy there. And I’d be much much happier about this hefty, not-subtle analogy if the single LGBT character in this story wasn’t revealed petty much in the epilogue. There isn’t any representation here, which is more than a little annoying (there is a pair of “heterosexual life partners who aren’t lesbian honest”… and I have no idea what is even being attempted here. Just no).On top of all this we also have the question of super powered people who don’t WANT to fight. Who can actually see a way to use their super powers to the greater benefit of all that doesn’t involve battling other super powered people. Which also comes with the touching story of Claudia, her family and her own struggle with being both immensely powerful, able to help so many – but not WANTING to be a hero.Claudia is also a recurring POC in the book and it’s a nice touch to see her story expanded beyond what we’ve seen so far. The gathering of super hero kids also has several POC characters among them. But I still hate Chinatown – whyyy do we have the villainous area of the city be China town? Especially since there are no actual Chinese people in this Chinatown! The name is redundant.We do have two disabled characters – two mentally ill characters in the form of Marcia and Abigail. I’m leery about both of them. Both see them using medication and dealing with their illnesses in different ways. But at the same time they are also depicted as dangerous, unstable and a threat – which is such a common trope.Of course this all returns to our three heroes, Penny, Claire and Ray and the question – what do they want? This touches back to the eternal question hero vs villain but also goes far more as they work on solo identities and examine their own motivationsRead More
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  • Greg Farnum
    February 11, 2016
    "Henchmen" returns us to the world of superpowered Penny Akk. It is significantly better than previous novel "Please Don’t Tell My Parents I Blew Up the Moon", and thankfully returns us to the Los Angeles setting with her school and parents. The storyline is a lot more comprehensible than I remember Moon’s being, but there also isn’t the forward thrust that was present in "Please Don’t Tell My Parents I’m a Supervillain" — it’s a series of events in Penny’s life that are enjoyable to read about "Henchmen" returns us to the world of superpowered Penny Akk. It is significantly better than previous novel "Please Don’t Tell My Parents I Blew Up the Moon", and thankfully returns us to the Los Angeles setting with her school and parents. The storyline is a lot more comprehensible than I remember Moon’s being, but there also isn’t the forward thrust that was present in "Please Don’t Tell My Parents I’m a Supervillain" — it’s a series of events in Penny’s life that are enjoyable to read about in the moment but don’t do much to push her character or her friends forward (some relationships evolve, and secondary characters undergo interesting changes, but nothing is *done* with those changes!) — a big contrast with Penny's acquisition of powers, subsequent rollercoaster, and final assertion of her place in the world in the initial novel.Oh, and it needs another pass from a good type editor. But it’s still fun to read and a significant improvement from the second book.
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  • Strina K
    April 30, 2016
    I really liked a lot of things, but weirdly, my favorite might be Marcia's character arc? It was just such a nice surprise that she even *got* a character arc! She spent two books as Classic Mean Girl (Now with Bonus Combat Action!!) and then she got all interesting! That never happens. I also adored every single thing about Bull and his family's story. He is such a good dad! I need to know so much about Irene! Oh, oh, also Cassie's *everything*. Awkward teenage bisexuals who just want to superh I really liked a lot of things, but weirdly, my favorite might be Marcia's character arc? It was just such a nice surprise that she even *got* a character arc! She spent two books as Classic Mean Girl (Now with Bonus Combat Action!!) and then she got all interesting! That never happens. I also adored every single thing about Bull and his family's story. He is such a good dad! I need to know so much about Irene! Oh, oh, also Cassie's *everything*. Awkward teenage bisexuals who just want to superhero battle their crush = my eternal delight, more forever, I would like a whole book please.
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  • Donny
    March 24, 2017
    Liked the return of story-telling from where we were in book 2. This book is more like a Slice-of-Life that happens to be in a world with super powers. I like where this novel left the characters for the next in the series.
  • Leona
    March 21, 2017
    Review coming soon...
  • Isis
    February 5, 2016
    I would like to thank Curiosity Quills Press for an e-ARC of this book to review. Though I received this e-book for free, that has no impact upon the honesty of my review. Goodreads Teaser: "What would middle school be like if half your classmates had super powers? It's time for Penny Akk to find out. Her latest (failed) attempt to become a superhero has inspired the rest of the kids in her school to reveal their own powers. Now, all of her relationships are changing. She has a not-so-secret adm I would like to thank Curiosity Quills Press for an e-ARC of this book to review. Though I received this e-book for free, that has no impact upon the honesty of my review. Goodreads Teaser: "What would middle school be like if half your classmates had super powers? It's time for Penny Akk to find out. Her latest (failed) attempt to become a superhero has inspired the rest of the kids in her school to reveal their own powers. Now, all of her relationships are changing. She has a not-so-secret admirer, who wants to be Penny's partner almost as much as she wants to be Penny's rival. The meanest girl in school has gained super powers and lost her mind. Can Penny help her find a better one? Can she help an aging superhero connect with his daughter, and mend the broken hearts of two of the most powerful people in the world? And in all this, where will she find the time for her own super villainous fun, or even more dangerous, to start dating?It's going to be a long, strange semester."Penny's zany adventures continue, often with the help of her besties Claire and Ray. Along with Penny, Claire and Ray are the rest of The Inscrutable Machine, which is the name of their supervillain alter ego. When operating as The Inscrutable Machine Penny's name is Bad Penny, Claire's is E-Claire, and Ray's is as Reviled. Ray is also Penny's boyfriend, adding just that much more to her ever expanding, not to mention evermore confusing, world. As badly as Penny still wants to be a superhero, it seems she's stuck being a supervillain for the time being. But in the interim Penny is suddenly leading their newly expanded club for kids whose parents have superpowers. All of their new members have superpowers of their own, and are beyond eager to be out in the open about it for the first time in their young lives. And for some reason, everyone wants to duel Penny! Yet her parents have expressly forbidden it. What's a supervillain to do? In Penny's case, apparently several things. But her action with the greatest impact is reuniting retired supervillain Bull with his wife and daughter, which starts some sort of strange chain reaction. Now Penny must balance her time with Claire and Ray, school, the club and all it entails, as well as The Inscrutable Machine. If she thought leading a double life was hard, she's in for a shock now that she's got many more aspects of her life to juggle; especially for those she must keep hidden or risk losing everything. It's all these tasks that allow Penny to really grow as a character. Indeed, both Claire and Ray also grow, which somewhat alters the relationship between the three friends, as one would expect. Luckily none of the changes are for the worse, though there is one possible change that I felt was far to soon to be realistically considered. Who knows if we'll see that change come to fruition, or even if this book marks the end of the series. It certainly felt like could go either way. While this story didn't have the wildness that the last one had, there were still plenty of learning, life altering, and just plain fun, moments to be had for all. Between dealing with the normal challenges of growing up, these kids also face the additional, and possibly harder challenges that come with having superpowers. Especially learning to control their powers long before reaching true emotional maturity. It leads to many an entertaining situation, each of which had an attached lesson. But as with the prior books, these lessons were blended well enough to naturally feel very much a part of the story, as opposed to feeling as if they were being forced upon the reader. And at the same time they added to the depth of the storyline, and helped keep the plot moving forward at a decent pace. Once again Mr. Roberts has managed to keep his characters' development moving forward right along with the plot, all while still keeping the storyline cohesive and fun. Nicely done sir, nicely done.
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  • Edgar Perez
    October 4, 2016
    Despite the super stuff, the life experiences are still present and the characters lovable.Really liking where it's going to
  • Joshua
    March 5, 2016
    DISCLAMER: I received an electronic copy of this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.There are some authors out there who can take a variety of disparate plotlines and assemble them together in a glorious tapestry of wonder and glory. Richard Roberts is not one of them. Roberts is a fine writer who desperately needs an even finer editor. There were a ton of things going on in this story and a lot of plot threads were left unresolved at the end of this story. The story wandere DISCLAMER: I received an electronic copy of this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.There are some authors out there who can take a variety of disparate plotlines and assemble them together in a glorious tapestry of wonder and glory. Richard Roberts is not one of them. Roberts is a fine writer who desperately needs an even finer editor. There were a ton of things going on in this story and a lot of plot threads were left unresolved at the end of this story. The story wandered aimlessly from one set of events to another with little connecting the disparate events of Penny’s life. So why does this book rate three full stars, then? Well, despite its manifold flaws, I still had a hell of a lot of fun reading this tale. It takes a fair bit of natural talent to salvage a story as disorganized and incoherent as this, and Roberts has that in spades. What saved this book in the end was the wonderful characters that drew me to this book and its predecessors in the first place. I felt a strong connection to the main characters and found the supporting characters endearing and charming. I enjoyed thoroughly seeing them deal with the trials and tribulations of heroism and/or villainy as well as the equal if not greater trials and tribulations of middle school. And believe me, that’s pretty difficult to handle all its own. Been there, done that. The middle school part, not the villainy part.Now that we’ve gotten the bad stuff out of the way, let’s talk about the good stuff. Because there’s a lot of that. There are a lot of fabulous scenes in this book. There are maybe a dozen different scenes I can point out to as my favorite, but the one that stayed with me is the date/museum robbery undertaken by Penny and Ray. The two of them have such a wonderfully sweet relationship, one built on mutual respect and trust, and it’s hard not to ship them because of that. Also, it was pretty cool to see rogue archeology in action. In a genre that seems to thrive on pointless conflict, it is refreshing to see main characters work in a cohesive team. There are a lot of spectacular scenes in this book, as the people around Penny start embracing their hidden powers and working through their various problems. From epic fights to small but poignant moments, Roberts has a lot of cool things to offer us. There’s also some welcome character development from certain characters who seemed fairly one-dimensional earlier in the series. There are still a number of mysteries that still need to be solved. Exactly what precipitated Marcia’s jarring change of personality? What the hell is going on with Ray’s home life? And, of course, the very end of the book, which rather changes matters.These are all questions that I eagerly look forward to finding out the answers to in later books. This book was a joy to read. It was a breath of fresh air for me at a time when my psyche seems to be conspiring against me and stress is ascendant. This book was FUN, fun enough to forgive for a lack of coherent plot. But please, for the love of God, Roberts: Find yourself a good editor and LISTEN to him or her. Please.
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  • hao nguyen
    June 22, 2016
    Saaaaaaad......;(I really, really wanted to like this. I truly did. That's why it's so sad, actually.*There are spoilers in this rant*Let's start with the good ( if few ) parts. I appreciated that Penny was trying to be a hero (only the first time). Also, the Ray/Penny thing was cute (the first time). Claudia and Bull...adorable.Criticizing time! Yay! (Note the sarcasm)Okay, so literally EVERYONE changed. I get that this might be a series that depends on turning perspectives on their head, but c Saaaaaaad......;(I really, really wanted to like this. I truly did. That's why it's so sad, actually.*There are spoilers in this rant*Let's start with the good ( if few ) parts. I appreciated that Penny was trying to be a hero (only the first time). Also, the Ray/Penny thing was cute (the first time). Claudia and Bull...adorable.Criticizing time! Yay! (Note the sarcasm)Okay, so literally EVERYONE changed. I get that this might be a series that depends on turning perspectives on their head, but come on, Mr. Roberts, don't ruin PERFECTLY GOOD CHARACTERS!!!!!! Like for example, we see absolutely no Inscrutable Machine. We see Penny/Ray/Claire but no Inscrutable Machine. And Ray's the one I'm mad at. He's acting so 'oh woe is me, Penny, the only reason I'm still here is you', so different from his usual banter with Penny and Claire. It really just hurts to think about. And PENNY, my GOD, she's INSUFFERABLE. Ok, so her parents ban her from using superpowers, right? She literally GOES ALONG WITH IT. BAD PENNY? LISTENING TO HER PARENTS? NEVER. But yes. And Claire Lutra is not bad, but she's kinda obsessed with being a cat burglar. And we see no villainy at all. Except for this one time when Penny's using VIRTUAL REALITY. *face palm* I don't even know how, 'cause I was skipping pages it was that boring. Speaking of villainy, I think only the villains and older heroes stayed the same. At least Lucyfar was there. Sigh. Then Maria, Miss A, whatever, turned to a freaking psycho villain, which stung more than it should've. And don't get me started on the "Superpower Club" Ughhhhh..... Ok, so since Penny doesn't use her powers, she doesn't show down those young whippersnappers and makes it utterly boring. And CASSIE? No. Just no. By the way, that museum date was...weird. And that ending? Mr. Roberts, you better be writing a fourth or...well, I can't really say. And make it better. Please. I almost cried it was so disappointing. And I NEVER cry about books. Well, that's over. Ok, if you want no spoilers, it was fine (coughHORRIBLEcough) just read it yourself. Bye, of to read better books such as Untamed, or The Moth in the Mirror.Sadly, Bookworm
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  • Lana Waltosz
    March 23, 2016
    This is the 3rd book in the series, and I started out here just cause the opportunity to read this one came up. I surprisingly enjoyed this book. I kept putting off reading this book because I kind of figured that I wouldn't really like it. It's geared more towards middle-school age children, and I'm 20 going on 21, so I figured this wouldn't really be the book for me. I've always been an advanced reader, so this book would have been something I would have read in 4th or 5th grade probably. The This is the 3rd book in the series, and I started out here just cause the opportunity to read this one came up. I surprisingly enjoyed this book. I kept putting off reading this book because I kind of figured that I wouldn't really like it. It's geared more towards middle-school age children, and I'm 20 going on 21, so I figured this wouldn't really be the book for me. I've always been an advanced reader, so this book would have been something I would have read in 4th or 5th grade probably. The characters were actually really well developed, which surprised me. They each had stories behind them, and although reading the first two books in the series would have helped, I was able to do fine with understanding it reading this one alone. The superpowers within this book weren't all cliche, in fact, there were some that I had never heard of or even thought of before. The variety within that was nice. The characters all had distinct personalities, and I could picture all of them fairly clearly. The different aspects of this book, the romance, the superpowers, the good vs. evil theme, all blended well together, which can be really difficult to do, especially if you're trying to use language an 11 year old would understand. Roberts does a fantastic job of making this an entertaining book, whether you're an 11 year old or a 20 year old. I'm not sure if I would ever read it again, but I probably will read the other two books in the series, and am hoping for a fourth!
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  • Modrukinstealer
    April 1, 2016
    I enjoyed reading it. There's plenty of inventive super powers as well as some of the old standby's that are fun to imagine. The book is essentially them going through most if not all of a school year. There isn't too much action in this book, though there is some fighting there are only a handful. Penny does a couple inventions. Overall I think I like this book a little more than the second but not as much as the third. I was excited about the going in to space thing but that story just didn't I enjoyed reading it. There's plenty of inventive super powers as well as some of the old standby's that are fun to imagine. The book is essentially them going through most if not all of a school year. There isn't too much action in this book, though there is some fighting there are only a handful. Penny does a couple inventions. Overall I think I like this book a little more than the second but not as much as the third. I was excited about the going in to space thing but that story just didn't feel like it fit in with the rest of the world to me where this one fit perfectly in to the world. (view spoiler)[I'd like a bit more action I think. Also I think that based on the feel of the relationship of Penny and her parents and her level of intelligence as well as theirs the reasons for not telling them the whole truth have long since gotten to the point where it seems ridiculous she hasn't told them yet. It feels like they'll be more upset that she didn't trust them to tell them the truth from the beginning will be far more than any 'trouble' she'll get in to for being a villain. The world as a whole is pretty meh about people who are villains as it is, they're friends with Claire's mom who was a villain among others. And honestly based on The Audit's abilities and both her parents intelligence it seems a little silly to believe they haven't figured out Bad Penny is her daughter.(hide spoiler)]Anywho other than those couple minor issues I enjoyed the book overall and would recommend it if you liked the 1st book in the series.
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  • Magda
    February 4, 2016
    This was a very entertaining read, I enjoyed how the author showed the super community, all the villains and heroes mixed up together from their young years till the adulthood. It shows that each of them has a rightful place.Penny and her friends create a delightful bunch of kind who simply can’t resist using their powers and who could blame them? If I could, I would be doing the same thing :D.In this story you’ll find plenty of power shows, from the first opening fight at a school game, till th This was a very entertaining read, I enjoyed how the author showed the super community, all the villains and heroes mixed up together from their young years till the adulthood. It shows that each of them has a rightful place.Penny and her friends create a delightful bunch of kind who simply can’t resist using their powers and who could blame them? If I could, I would be doing the same thing :D.In this story you’ll find plenty of power shows, from the first opening fight at a school game, till the final battle, a fantastic display of superpowers, various inventions and strategy skills. All kept in fast paced story about friends trying to discover what they really want to do with their life.As much as I enjoyed reading the book, I find it hard to pinpoint the main plot. There were so many interesting things going on that I can’t really say which of the events were the most important. Certainly there was a lot of character development, which is great and I would love to read more about our heroes / villains in the next book, but I’d love to see where is this all heading. Since this was the first book I’ve read from this series I intend to read the previous two books soon. It seems I did miss few things from earlier stories and I want to fill the gaps :).I received this copy from Curiosity Quills in exchange for an honest review.Check this and other reviews at: https://maginibooks.wordpress.com
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  • Heather
    January 10, 2017
    This book had no clear plot. It jumped around, often making no sense because of this. There were grammar and spelling errors. It was in serious need of an editor. I kept hoping it would get better. The first book in the series was so great. The second book was weird, but not horrible. This one was just kind of terrible. There were many characters that were sometimes referred to by their villain/hero names and sometimes by their real names with no rhyme or reason to when making it hard to keep th This book had no clear plot. It jumped around, often making no sense because of this. There were grammar and spelling errors. It was in serious need of an editor. I kept hoping it would get better. The first book in the series was so great. The second book was weird, but not horrible. This one was just kind of terrible. There were many characters that were sometimes referred to by their villain/hero names and sometimes by their real names with no rhyme or reason to when making it hard to keep them straight. Penny repeatedly said she couldn’t remember one character’s real name and so she was always referred to as Beaddown and then all of a sudden she was referred to by her real name (Charlotte) and from then on only called her real name and not her hero name. That was just one example of the weird editing issues. The Penny/Ray relationship was ridiculous (particularly since they are only 12 and 13) and it seemed like the same scenes were repeated over and over. Often things happened or side plots were introduced and then abandoned making the whole book a mess. The end was so lame and disappointing. The climax of the story was a dud. I am sad to say I just don’t recommend this book at all.
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  • Ibrinar
    March 3, 2016
    I think I would class the third book as slice of life just in a super powered world. Yes there are some super powered conflicts but they don't really come from a main plot. Not a bad book though.(view spoiler)[The kiss at the end surprised me. It was clear to me that she didn't just want to speak with her to get a rematch but I didn't guess romantic interest. (Well I did briefly in chinatown, just not serioulsy.) Will anything come of that is the question? Reviled wanting to leave makes that mor I think I would class the third book as slice of life just in a super powered world. Yes there are some super powered conflicts but they don't really come from a main plot. Not a bad book though.(view spoiler)[The kiss at the end surprised me. It was clear to me that she didn't just want to speak with her to get a rematch but I didn't guess romantic interest. (Well I did briefly in chinatown, just not serioulsy.) Will anything come of that is the question? Reviled wanting to leave makes that more likely, but it would require Penny to be bi which is seriously rare in fiction in main characters. She hasn't really shown interest in girls but then she hasn't really shown interest in anyone beside reviled. And ending the book with it indicates it will have some importance in the next one, of course it could be a one sided love plot. Well as much as I like shipping characters Cassie didn't get enough screen time interacting with penny normally for me to say whether I would ship them if Penny actually turns out to be bi. (hide spoiler)]
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  • David Caldwell
    November 6, 2016
    Penny tries to come out as a hero. While she wins the battle, her parents are not happy and forbid her from getting into anymore superhero battles. Meanwhile, plenty of other kids in school are deciding to reveal they have powers. The superpower club swells and the kids want to practice their powers. With their new chaperone, the former supervillain, Bull, they form a superpowered tournament. Claire and Ray still want to have the Inscrutable Machine, but Penny is afraid her mom will catch her us Penny tries to come out as a hero. While she wins the battle, her parents are not happy and forbid her from getting into anymore superhero battles. Meanwhile, plenty of other kids in school are deciding to reveal they have powers. The superpower club swells and the kids want to practice their powers. With their new chaperone, the former supervillain, Bull, they form a superpowered tournament. Claire and Ray still want to have the Inscrutable Machine, but Penny is afraid her mom will catch her using her powers. Penny and Ray also want to explore their relationship a little more, even if they have to have Claire as a chaperone. This will make for an interesting school year.There isn't as much villainy in this third installment, but there is still plenty of action. It is interesting to see all of the kids working to develop their powers and trying to decide how they want to use them (hero, villain, or something else). There is still some feeling of things being introduced and then forgotten about, but hopefully they will be explored in later books. I would give this book 4.5 stars.
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  • Juho Salo
    February 12, 2016
    I'm very much not in the target group. Still, I loved the first book in the series. In hindsight probably due to the way the adult world and viewpoint clashed with how teenager-heroes experienced things. This was missing from the second book what with the space adventure.. and for the most part it was missing here. I loved the parts where Penny interacted with her parents or with the larger society. On the other hand, the parts (the majority of the book) where she needed to be interact with othe I'm very much not in the target group. Still, I loved the first book in the series. In hindsight probably due to the way the adult world and viewpoint clashed with how teenager-heroes experienced things. This was missing from the second book what with the space adventure.. and for the most part it was missing here. I loved the parts where Penny interacted with her parents or with the larger society. On the other hand, the parts (the majority of the book) where she needed to be interact with other teens left me cold. Still, I can't really say the book was bad, as much as it wasn't balanced for me. Would have wanted more interaction on the adult world, more stuff related to Penny creating a presence, more adventures with the small remote-robot or the clock, but every time I got interested the plot detoured. Perhaps the kids enjoy this sort of things more than I did.
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  • Russell Dunk
    April 10, 2016
    Full disclosure I received an ARC in exchange for a review.... And then proceeded to buy the book when it came out because it is freaking awesome. Fair warning this review is full of spoliers.Ack is back!! The third book in this series and it continues to build on the excellent foundation from the first two. Some of my favourite parts include:The Audit coming to speak to Penny's class, a terrifying superhero who has weaponized statistics. "It is made from perfectly ordinary fruits and vegetables Full disclosure I received an ARC in exchange for a review.... And then proceeded to buy the book when it came out because it is freaking awesome. Fair warning this review is full of spoliers.Ack is back!! The third book in this series and it continues to build on the excellent foundation from the first two. Some of my favourite parts include:The Audit coming to speak to Penny's class, a terrifying superhero who has weaponized statistics. "It is made from perfectly ordinary fruits and vegetables and cuts of meats-" started Polly. "-from other realities," finished Barbara. Abigail got a little surreal in the supermarket.The offscreen scene of Lucyfar completely wreaking Penny's class of would-be super-thieves. Just the description is hilarious. So much of this book was just plain fun and it left so many interesting plot threads, more please!
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  • Ron
    September 15, 2016
    Penny, Claire, and Ray are back from their Jupiter adventure. Penny is trying to become a hero, but a super-powered fight at a football game results in her being grounded. But then she accidentally started a super-powered school club. After a trip to Chinatown led to her accompanying Bull home for a family reunion, Bad Penny and the Inscrutable Machine made a return to crime. But with super-powered fans keeping a look-out, crime or dates are much harder. And then there is the need to avoid fight Penny, Claire, and Ray are back from their Jupiter adventure. Penny is trying to become a hero, but a super-powered fight at a football game results in her being grounded. But then she accidentally started a super-powered school club. After a trip to Chinatown led to her accompanying Bull home for a family reunion, Bad Penny and the Inscrutable Machine made a return to crime. But with super-powered fans keeping a look-out, crime or dates are much harder. And then there is the need to avoid fighting. There is a nice, satisfying fight to end the book with many villain-leaning super-powered kids banding together to stop a rampaging robot horde from destroying their schools. This book was satisfying, but tinged with regret. I hope there are more adventures coming for Penny and the gang!
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  • Vincent Wood
    October 1, 2016
    The third book in the Please Don't Tell My Parents series. I feel the author has got back on track with what made the first book special with this book. I admit I was a little disappointed with the second book. Had the story continued with this story and just skipped the events from book two I admit I would think more of this series in general.Yes our favorite teenage supervillain is back and back to her supervillainous ways while hiding her secret identity from her parents and attempting to cre The third book in the Please Don't Tell My Parents series. I feel the author has got back on track with what made the first book special with this book. I admit I was a little disappointed with the second book. Had the story continued with this story and just skipped the events from book two I admit I would think more of this series in general.Yes our favorite teenage supervillain is back and back to her supervillainous ways while hiding her secret identity from her parents and attempting to create a superhero identity.This is definitely a young adult level of book so do not expect anything deep from it, but if you enjoy books where the characters have superpowers you may like this book and this series.
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  • LaSibila
    October 3, 2016
    Penny resuelve jugar heroína de día y villana cada fin de semana por medio como un juego de doble identidad. Sin embargo, sus compañeros de escuela media empiezan a exponer sus poderes y la llevan a formar un club para practicar sus dotes. En este libro ya no se enfatiza en la creación de nuevos juguetes ni enfrentamientos con villanos ni heroes (:( sino que empieza a filosofar en elegir: héroe, villano o ninguno de los dos. También empieza a salir con Ray, lo cual es un poco extraño. Advertenci Penny resuelve jugar heroína de día y villana cada fin de semana por medio como un juego de doble identidad. Sin embargo, sus compañeros de escuela media empiezan a exponer sus poderes y la llevan a formar un club para practicar sus dotes. En este libro ya no se enfatiza en la creación de nuevos juguetes ni enfrentamientos con villanos ni heroes (:( sino que empieza a filosofar en elegir: héroe, villano o ninguno de los dos. También empieza a salir con Ray, lo cual es un poco extraño. Advertencia: a mi parecer, algunos temas deben ser acompañados por un adulto: una estudiante besa a otra en la boca entre otras situaciones. Esta mutación en la temática cambia mi perspectiva de la serie. No creo la que siga leyendo.
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  • Redi Ahad
    February 12, 2016
    The first book was great, all the action and the mad scientist blackouts. the second one was kind of convoluted and confusing but still a bunch of action and mad science. this third one had me wondering when it was going to get in gear, and it never quite did. so much time spent on talking about feelings and what two kids ordered at some upscale restaurant, random run in at a museum that didnt develop, and like two tiny little mad scientist episodes that were kind of glossed over real quick. I m The first book was great, all the action and the mad scientist blackouts. the second one was kind of convoluted and confusing but still a bunch of action and mad science. this third one had me wondering when it was going to get in gear, and it never quite did. so much time spent on talking about feelings and what two kids ordered at some upscale restaurant, random run in at a museum that didnt develop, and like two tiny little mad scientist episodes that were kind of glossed over real quick. I mean come on, you spent a whole chapter talking about the pheonix chicken and two sentences on how the gloves were built.
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  • Ashley
    February 28, 2016
    Loved the story, and the fact that it was more the style of the first book. The second book while good I think was a weaker installment. That said I deeply enjoyed this story. I am really really looking forward to the next installment both for general interest but also to see what develops on the Cassie situation. As a lady with similar proclivities as Cassie I really want to see something develop there, or for Penny to at least consider it. And really (view spoiler)[Penny and Ray have only kiss Loved the story, and the fact that it was more the style of the first book. The second book while good I think was a weaker installment. That said I deeply enjoyed this story. I am really really looking forward to the next installment both for general interest but also to see what develops on the Cassie situation. As a lady with similar proclivities as Cassie I really want to see something develop there, or for Penny to at least consider it. And really (view spoiler)[Penny and Ray have only kissed like 3-4 times (hide spoiler)] so it is possible, right?
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  • Jonathan
    February 5, 2016
    I received a free e-copy of this book from publisher via Net- gallery. out of the 3 book in this series I have only read this and the first one.So I cannot comment on if it was better than the second. I will say I prefer the first book to this one though. It felt like ages before anything happened. my Rateing is actually 3.5. since you cant give that I went with four. I did not hate it and still love the uniqueness of the series. 40% into the book I went back to enjoying it.The first part was to I received a free e-copy of this book from publisher via Net- gallery. out of the 3 book in this series I have only read this and the first one.So I cannot comment on if it was better than the second. I will say I prefer the first book to this one though. It felt like ages before anything happened. my Rateing is actually 3.5. since you cant give that I went with four. I did not hate it and still love the uniqueness of the series. 40% into the book I went back to enjoying it.The first part was too slow for me. I would like to thanks the publisher for the invite.
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  • Rachel
    February 13, 2016
    This was my favorite book of the three, though there was a lot less heroing and villaining, and a lot more character development. Penny discovers that her actions are causing more and more of the kids at her school to come out of the closet about their superpowers. Enough that she can form a superpower club! With a robot-Penny-lookalike distracting everyone from Bad Penny, she has some time to build a new base, and she and her friends have more time to think about what they want to do, and how t This was my favorite book of the three, though there was a lot less heroing and villaining, and a lot more character development. Penny discovers that her actions are causing more and more of the kids at her school to come out of the closet about their superpowers. Enough that she can form a superpower club! With a robot-Penny-lookalike distracting everyone from Bad Penny, she has some time to build a new base, and she and her friends have more time to think about what they want to do, and how they want to do it. Of course, chaos ensues regardless.Lots of fun!
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  • Virginia
    June 23, 2016
    Solid, enjoyable, and nice to see the characters changing as time develops and their world changing in an appropriate response, too. Yes, not enough Inscrutable Machine, but that's ok, Penny's developing, and showing the fluidity of the hero/villain labels.Though, wish she'd learned her lesson from Book 2 about paying attention when some fangirl gloms on to her so strongly. Nice little wrap up to the story arc.
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  • Jaron Harris
    February 7, 2016
    I continue to enjoy this series, but I definitely feel like the first book was still the best for alot of reasons. I miss the antics of the Inscrutable Machine, and this particular entry felt like it was a lot of scene setting without a lot of followup. Still, an enjoyable read and I look forward to more. Mr. Roberts has given us a compelling and interesting Superhero setting that I will always enjoy getting another glimpse into.
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