All My Friends (Eagle Rock series, vol 3)
Fancy Pink is making a splash in the Los Angeles indie music scene and Bina, its singer and guitarist, is ready for it. Hope Larson’s All My Friends, the third and final installment in the Eagle Rock graphic novel series, is a rad conclusion to the musical middle grade series.
Bina and her bandmates, Kesi and Lora, can’t believe they’re playing The Echo, where they’re opening up for Anne Surly, one of the biggest bands in the scene. The show doesn’t go exactly as planned, when one of the strings on Lora’s bass breaks mid-song, but they still leave an impression. Fancy Pink is soon contacted to license one of their songs to L.A. Teen Private Eye, a new streaming show.
When their song makes its big debut, the girls are suddenly in high demand. They even have fans waiting for them at school! Before they know it, Fancy Pink discovers a record label is interested in signing them. Bina can picture her future as a rock star, selling out stages all over the world! Until all of the band members’ parents forbid it. The music industry isn’t healthy for a band their age and not something they want the girls getting caught up in. They’re so close to what they want; why can’t their parents understand that?
Meanwhile, Bina does some backup vocals for Anne Surly, thanks to her new friendship with one of the members of the band. Fancy Pink decides to record an album on their own. With all their connections to the industry and friends to support them, it’s sure to show their parents they’re serious about their music.
The maturity and ingenuity of these characters shines when the girls start their mission to record their own album. Each member has creative ways to raise her portion of the funds and readers will root for the band to succeed. Fancy Pink’s story ends with an epic secret show, the culmination of their effort. It’s a fantastic finale to the world Larson’s created in the Eagle Rock graphic novels.
Larson manages balancing Bina’s two worlds as both a young teenager and a musician in a genuine manner. She’s dealing with boy troubles. There’s Austin, the boy from her past that she can’t get out of her head, and Cooper, the cute older boy from Anne Surly. These never become the main focus of her story, although they do contribute to Fancy Pink’s story as a band. Neither does her relationship with her parents and her struggles with them to understand the music world. Readers will find her passion in all aspects of her life and her desire to succeed at what she loves admirable.
The pink coloring of Larson’s art is a perfect match. The band scenes and lettering for the lyrics jump off the page, making the reader want to hum along with these fictional songs. The characters are diverse and readers get a feel for Larson’s version of L.A. where Bina lives. There’s even some mentions of real life bands, potential Easter eggs for readers looking to discover some new music.
Readers who enjoyed the other books in the series, All Summer Long and All Together Now, will certainly enjoy their last visit with these characters. Luckily, the book also works incredibly well as a standalone, so readers new to the characters will find themselves able to jump right in and get a front row seat to Bina and Fancy Pink’s story.
All My Friends (Eagle Rock series, Vol. 3)
By Hope Larson
Macmillian Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2022
Publisher Age Rating: 10-14
Series ISBNs and Order
NFNT Age Recommendation: Middle Grade (7-11), Tween (10-13)