Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Nick and Tesla's Robot Army Rampage - Bob Pflugfelder and Steve Hockensmith

Summary: Nick and Tesla return in an all-new, robot-filled adventure! 

When a rash of robberies hits the town of Half Moon Bay, 11-year-old sleuths Nick and Tesla are determined to catch the criminals—but to do so, they'll have to build a host of new gadgets and gizmos! In this robot-themed follow-up to Nick and Tesla's High-Voltage Danger Lab, the brother-and-sister duo build four different droids out of ordinary household objects—and illustrated instructions are included throughout the story, so you can build them, too! Make bristlebots that buzz, hoverbots that float above the ground, battlebots that duke it out, and more! Can Nick and Tesla catch the criminal mastermind—and foil his army of rampaging robots—before it's too late?  (Summary from amazon.com, image from goodreads.com.  I received a free copy of the book in exchange for my honest opinion.)

My Review:  If you don't remember, my son and I were completely smitten with the first adventure of Nick and Tesla.  In fact, we loved it so much that for my son's eighth birthday, he requested a Mad Science theme - in their honor.  We had a blast.  (I'm still recovering.)  It came as no shock, then, than when I asked my son if he'd like to read the second one, there was screaming, and shouting, and the kind of mayhem that only an extremely excited boy can execute.  (He stole my copy from me.  He also guarded it in his sleep!)

We join Nick and Tesla two weeks after their first adventure, and although life with Uncle Newt will never be boring, they've settled into their summer.  Until, however, their favorite shop The Wonder Hut is purchased by a former colleague of Uncle Newt's ... and things start inexplicably disappearing from the neighboring shops.  Why do our favorite scientists-in-training care?  Because their best friend, Silas, asks for their help.  His family's store was hit, and they'll lose everything if the stolen item isn't found.  Nick and Tesla can't let that happen!

Goodness, Pflugfelder and Hockensmith are a fantastic team.  The story they've created is fun, engaging, mysterious, and completely true to character.  The teamwork their characters have created is not only inspiring, it's so much fun to witness.   However, it's not all sunshine and rainbows - because reality isn't.  Our main characters miss their parents terribly.  Uncle Newt is great, but he's not the same, and Nick and Tesla haven't heard from their parents since they left for Uzbekistan.  The mystery behind their "work" deepens in this book.  Okay, that's enough of my review - want to hear what a science-obsessed boy thinks of it?

Charlie's Review: I really liked the experiments that Pflugfelder put in the book.  It's weird [REDACTED - SPOILERS!!] sets off the rampage.
Charlie's rating: Five Stars a lot of the funny plans help the good rating.

My Rating:  Five Stars

For the Sensitive Reader:  The word 'butt' is used a few times.  Since I'm strict with my kids' language, that stood out to me.  But that's me being nit-picky!

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