Cover image for Minion
First edition.
Physical Description:
277 pages ; 22 cm
"Michael Morn is a supervillain-in-training and the adoptive son of the brilliant criminal mastermind whose sense of right and wrong is thrown into question when a new superhero arrives in town"--


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John David Anderson returns to the world of superheroes he created in Sidekicked with an entirely new cast of characters in Minion, a funny and emotional companion to his first breakout tween novel--perfect for superhero fans who also love the work of bestselling authors Rick Riordan, Louis Sachar, and Frank Cottrell Boyce.

Michael Morn might be a villain, but he's really not a bad guy. When you live in New Liberty, there are no Supers and only two kinds of people: those who turn to crime and those who suffer. Michael and his adoptive father spend their days building boxes--special devices with mysterious abilities--that they sell to the mob at a price. They provide for each other, they look out for each other, and they'd never betray each other.

But then a Super comes to town, and Michael's world is thrown into disarray. The Comet could destroy everything Michael and his dad have built, the safe and secure life they've made for themselves. And now Michael and his father face a choice: to hold tight to their life or to let it unravel.

Reviews 3

School Library Journal Review

Gr 5-8-Michael Born doesn't consider himself a bad guy, even though, at age 13, he has already helped his adopted father create several questionable inventions, and robbed a bank. Like his friend Zach, who can make spikes appear all over his body, Michael has a superhuman ability: he can make people do his bidding, as long as the command is something they would at least consider. He has rules about how he uses his talent, refusing to control his father or Viola, the amber-eyed beauty he meets at the mall. Michael doesn't worry too much about the morality of his life with his dad, until the city is invaded by an army of goons, followed by a mysterious superhero known as the Comet, and Michael finds himself at the center of a sinister plot to take over the world. In this companion to Sidekicked (HarperCollins, 2013), Anderson introduces a fascinating new cast of characters. Action sequences are interspersed with more mundane moments that explore Michael's past, his relationship with his father, and his budding romance with Viola. The real strength lies in the writing, with its humorous, vivid descriptions, and strong, original voice. There are also several mysteries to keep readers intrigued, including the identity of Michael's biological parents, the nature of his father's latest invention, and the secret behind the Comet and his sidekick. Interesting questions about good and evil and the ethics of coercion are explored. The story has a high-pitched climax, complete with a truly evil supervillain, yet leaves plenty of room for a sequel. This is an engaging, thought-provoking novel for middle-grade superhero fans.-Ashley Larsen, Pacifica Libraries, CA (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Kirkus Review

Parents: Be warned.A generation or two back, parents used to tell their kids that comic books would rot their brains. It seems to have backfired, because those kids grew up and started making dozens of movies and television shows about superheroes. And over the past few years, a whole new subgenre of teen novels about superheroes and supervillains has evolved. Anderson's Sidekicked (2013) was one of the better examples, but this companion novel is even wittier and much less predictable. One of the pleasures of superhero stories is guessing what's coming next, but the joy here is that most of the time readers will guess wrong. The main character is called Michael Marion Magdalene Morn, and he's not a superhero. In the first chapter, he robs a bank. But it's hard to call him a villain. He has the ability to control minds, but two out of three times, he refuses to do it, on principle. Michael is as complex as the best Marvel and DC characters, and his dialogue is just as funny. The author trusts his readers enough to keep the characters ambiguous and to leave some mysteries unexplained at the end of the book.This novel should make Anderson's parents proud, even if they threw away his comics when he was little. His readers will just be happy. (Fantasy. 8-12) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Booklist Review

The author of Sidekicked (2013) continues to scuff up the line between heroism and villainy. Spirited from the orphanage when he was nine, Michael Marion Magdalene Morn (named by the nuns) has spent four years in hiding with kind but closemouthed Professor Edson an eccentric inventor of small black boxes capable of all sorts of shady exploit. Born with the ability to command anyone to do what he wants them to (within limits), Michael is ambivalent about using his power. Then the arrivals of a costumed crime-fighting superhero and a mad supervillain with a mind-control device plant him squarely in the middle, with some hard choices to make. Michael's musing that sometimes it's just hard to know what's right and what's best and why there even has to be a difference provides both a specific theme for this outing and an overall one for all of the author's thought-provoking work to date.--Peters, John Copyright 2010 Booklist