For anyone who has ever had a crush on a star - music star, movie star, sports star - this story will recapture some of the swooning and hysteria of being a fangirl. Mackenzie and her two best friends, Scarlet and Iris, are crazy about the band Perfect Storm. They flip out when they get tickets and backstage passes to the concert. But what Mac doesn't know is that her mom has been chosen as the band's new tour manager and she is taking Mackenzie along on tour with the band. Squee! Traveling for weeks on the road and even sharing a tutor with the boys helps Mac to realize that they are talented, but they are also just teenage boys. They make messes, have food fights, and play pranks just like everyone else their age.
This book has a lot going for it. The whole boy band and fangirl scene is very topical. Showing an inside glimpse of a band on tour is also entertaining; having to do homework even though you are a pop star, being on the road at all hours, having to plan your life around performances and appearances - it's not all as much fun as people think. And the relationships in the book have very realistic touches, whether it is a family like Mac and her mom, the "brotherhood" of the band members, or the friendships Mac develops with other characters. Calonita's writing is amusing and the illustrations capture memorable moments. The comic panels of Mac's imaginary alter ego, Mac Attack, are very amusing - especially the fact that she fights villains with a nail file.
For middle grade and tween readers who would like to see what the life of a pop star is like, or for those who simply enjoy books about friends and relationships, I'm with the Band is an enjoyable read that will have you laughing out loud or shaking your head at some of the antics.
I received a copy from the publisher for review purposes.