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Dave Sanchez is an average boy with an after school job and a pet gecko named Sticky All very normal until the day Sticky talks Sticky tells Dave a wild tale of a former life of crime, searching for Aztec gold with a treasure hunter named Damien Black, and of a magical Aztec wristband with shiny gold power ingots that will give the wearer super powers Dave doesn t believe a word until Sticky shows him the wristband But while Sticky managed to escape with the wristband, Damien Black has the power ingots So the lizard and treasure hunter each have something the other wants very badlyFilled with outrageous adventures, over the top characters, snappy funny dialogue, and a tongue planted firmly in cheek narration, this new series is sure to be a hit with young superheros everywhereWendelin Van Draanen spent many years as a teacher before devoting herself to writing full time She lives in Central California


10 thoughts on “Villain's Lair

  1. The Library Lady The Library Lady says:

    Kids will enjoy this But as an adult, I found Sticky s Spanglish Stickyese bit annoyingly reminiscent of the Taco Bell chihuahua And the narrator s confidences to the reader Ah ah ah,I warned you But this story is true has the same annoying ring of an award winning book I despise, The Tale of Despereaux Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup and a Spool of Thread.But again, I m an adult and this is for kids boy reluctant reader types, I would guess And some of them may go for i Kids will enjoy this But as an adult, I found Sticky s Spanglish Stickyese bit annoyingly reminiscent of the Taco Bell chihuahua And the narrator s confidences to the reader Ah ah ah,I warned you But this story is true has the same annoying ring of an award winning book I despise, The Tale of Despereaux Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup and a Spool of Thread.But again, I m an adult and this is for kids boy reluctant reader types, I would guess And some of them may go for it


  2. Emily Emily says:

    NOTE This review is specifically for the audiobook version The reader s performance may have skewed my perspective.If you still think Speedy Gonzales is an appropriate character for the 21st century, then you may enjoy Sticky as performed in this audiobook I m not entirely the character, with his stereotypical exclamations, is significantly better in print but in this format, I found him intolerable.


  3. Peg Peg says:

    In this first book of a new series, Van Draanan writes an exciting tale, full of outrageous characters, fast paced action, and lots of laughs Stephen Gilpin s pen and ink drawings add to the fun This will appeal to both boys and girls and should hook reluctant readers, who will be looking forward to the next installment.


  4. Dolly Dolly says:

    This is the first book in The Gecko and Sticky series by Wendelin Van Draanen It was a strange and almost nonsensical story, but by the end of the book I could see the appeal for younger children, especially boys.The accent on Sticky is very irritating and stereotypical , but otherwise I appreciated listening to Marc Cashman s narration He reads with a lot of energy and enthusiasm and he was able to change his voice enough to accommodate the myriad characters, all of which helps when listenin This is the first book in The Gecko and Sticky series by Wendelin Van Draanen It was a strange and almost nonsensical story, but by the end of the book I could see the appeal for younger children, especially boys.The accent on Sticky is very irritating and stereotypical , but otherwise I appreciated listening to Marc Cashman s narration He reads with a lot of energy and enthusiasm and he was able to change his voice enough to accommodate the myriad characters, all of which helps when listening to a story.This is certainly not a favorite, but I ve seen the series for awhile and finally thought I d check it out I believe this may be a series that engages reluctant readers, and I am sure that I ll give the next book a go as well


  5. Tami Tami says:

    The Gecko Sticky are two of the most hilarious characters I have ever come across in literature Sticky is the actual gecko and the Gecko is the superhero moniker of Sticky s 13 year old friend, Dave Sanchez Confused It makes sense when you read the book, whose tongue in cheek narrative style is full of asides and inside jokes for the reader The Gecko and Sticky actually make their first appearance within the pages of van Draanen s four book Shredderman series which I also highly recommen The Gecko Sticky are two of the most hilarious characters I have ever come across in literature Sticky is the actual gecko and the Gecko is the superhero moniker of Sticky s 13 year old friend, Dave Sanchez Confused It makes sense when you read the book, whose tongue in cheek narrative style is full of asides and inside jokes for the reader The Gecko and Sticky actually make their first appearance within the pages of van Draanen s four book Shredderman series which I also highly recommend There is very little of van Draanen s work I cannot recommend only those I have not yet read It should be noted that in Shredderman they appear as a fictional superhero and sidekick character whereas in The Gecko Sticky series the narrator specifically tells us she is relating an ABSOLUTELY TRUE story Dave is a typical 13 year old boy He is courageous, honest, well intentioned, and has an entrepeneurial spirit In the first installment he creates his own courier company powered by his bicycle This serves to establish him as responsible, reliable, and an experienced bicyclist, allowing him to believeably travel from one location to another He meets Sticky, a gecko lizard, and discovers in the first book of the series that Sticky can speak He later finds out that Sticky has a habit of stealing small items and is also guilty of both embellishing facts to his advantage and omitting those that are not Despite Sticky s less admirable qualities, his adventures with Dave opposite the exquisitely dastardly villian Damien Black show him to be good at heart Likewise the friendship between Dave and Sticky continues to grow in each book Dave learns unconditional acceptance of Sticky sfrustrating tendencies Sticky is increasingly genuine in his dealings with Dave as both gradually realize how much their friendship has come to mean to each of them The development of the friendship between the two characters is best experienced when reading the books in order but each individual story stands well on its own as well The three bumbling Bandito Brothers who are not really brothers and began as a mariachi band, not as bandits per se who perform as Damien Black s inept henchmen, along with Rosie, their buck toothed burro, are also an endless source of humor These books are a wonderful combination of humor and adventure I LOVE reading these stories aloud to an audience as well as independently I read the first installment aloud to my 4th graders this year and they really enjoyed it I highly recommend this series these stories are the definition of LAUGH OUT LOUD


  6. Gwen the Librarian Gwen the Librarian says:

    This is an adventurous, mysterious, and real story about a boy named Dave and his talking gecko, Sticky No, really, it s a true story Sticky leads Dave to a scary old mansion that is booby trapped with hollow walls and shrunken heads They are there to steal a magic Aztec armband that is currently in the possession of the evil villain Damien Black The armband, combined with powerful gold ingots, gives the wearer the ability to fly, turn invisible, all kinds of things They re stealing it beca This is an adventurous, mysterious, and real story about a boy named Dave and his talking gecko, Sticky No, really, it s a true story Sticky leads Dave to a scary old mansion that is booby trapped with hollow walls and shrunken heads They are there to steal a magic Aztec armband that is currently in the possession of the evil villain Damien Black The armband, combined with powerful gold ingots, gives the wearer the ability to fly, turn invisible, all kinds of things They re stealing it because they are good and Black is evil This adventure is just the beginning as Dave and Sticky try to get the best of Black Villain s Lair is the first book in a fun new series by the perenially popular Van Draanen


  7. Nickdastick Nickdastick says:

    Okay First of all, when my mom put this book on hold for me at the library, I thought it was going to be a stupid book But when I read my mom the flap I thought it sounded like a good book My mom even said it sounded like something I d write I m going to be an author when I grow up I really liked it.


  8. Libriar Libriar says:

    Series fiction aimed at boys isn t something that I usually read so it is hard for me to compare this book to others It was filled with adventure and light humor so I m sure 4th grade boys will enjoy this book about a boy and a gecko.


  9. Christy Christy says:

    Dave Sanchez is an average boy with an after school job and a pet gecko named Sticky All very normal until the day Sticky talks Sticky tells Dave a wild tale of a former life of crime, searching for Aztec gold with a treasure hunter named Damien Black, and of a magical Aztec wristband with shiny gold power ingots that will give the wearer super powers Dave doesn t believe a word until Sticky shows him the wristband But while Sticky managed to escape with the wristband, Damien Black has the p Dave Sanchez is an average boy with an after school job and a pet gecko named Sticky All very normal until the day Sticky talks Sticky tells Dave a wild tale of a former life of crime, searching for Aztec gold with a treasure hunter named Damien Black, and of a magical Aztec wristband with shiny gold power ingots that will give the wearer super powers Dave doesn t believe a word until Sticky shows him the wristband But while Sticky managed to escape with the wristband, Damien Black has the power ingots So the lizard and treasure hunter each have something the other wantsvery badly.Filled with outrageous adventures, over the top characters, snappy funny dialogue, and a tongue planted firmly in cheek narration, this new series is sure to be a hit with young superheros everywhere.Wendelin Van Draanen spent many years as a teacher before devoting herself to writing full time She lives in Central California


  10. Lisa C Lisa C says:

    We ve listened to the audiobook for three in this series so far The audiobook is great It s pretty funny, the villain is such a character The protagonist is a 13 year old boy with good values who has a talking gecko sidekick The story isn t life changing or anything In fact, I missed some parts and didn t care But it was wholesome entertainment for my 10yo.