When I read the description of this book, I thought that it sounded like someone took Rick Riordan’s books, Megamind, and The Good Place and put them into one novel. Which is a fantastic idea, by the way.
In Loki: A Bad God’s Guide to Being Good by Louie Stowell, Loki has done one bad thing too many for Odin. So the All-Father sends the god of mischief to Midgard (AKA Earth) as punishment. To make matters worse, Loki is in the body of a tween, has two Asgardian babysitters posing as parents, and a tween-bodied Thor posing as a brother. Loki has to record a diary over the next month, and if he does enough good and kind things, he will be allowed to return to Asgard. Needless to say, he is displeased with this arrangement.
Apparently I tend to enjoy stories that follow a complete jerk learning how to be a decent person (see the aforementioned Megamind and Good Place, and also add Christmas Carol and Under the Whispering Door). Now, I can add this book to that list!
Loki is such an obnoxious little snot at the beginning of this book, which is to be expected. It’s funny to see his reactions to rather mundane things on earth, like middle school and television and smart phones. He has some pretty quippy, sassy comments to make about a lot of these things. Also, his bond with Thor is quite fun, too. I enjoyed seeing his journey to gaining some amount of a conscience, as he has genuine interactions with Thor and kids at school. It’s kind of sweet, though Loki still retains the attitude and sass he started with, so it didn’t feel too unrealistic of a transformation.
Furthermore, the illustrations in this book are delightful! They either are directly part of the story, or just add funny visual elements. And the way this is structured as Loki’s diary, it enables there to be many fourth wall breakages, which are great.This is the first of a series, apparently, which I didn’t know when I read it. However, since it’s such a quick read, I’ll definitely try to grab the second one when it comes out, because I’d like to see how Loki continues to grow and change. Because in the end, Loki is a silly, wacky story with some decent lessons about how to be a good person (or a good god, in his case). Tweens will think this is wonderful, and I think it would be a good transitional book from graphic novels to full middle grade–length novels.