BooksForKidsBlog

Friday, June 02, 2017

SuperDuper Stink Detector! Kid Amazing Vs. The Blob by Josh Schneider

One day, while practicing his letters, Jimmy is interrupted by an extremely annoying howl. And, right on cue, there's the emergency catastrophe alarm! Jimmy rushes to the closet and--whoosh!--a secret door opens.

What could make a scholarly kid suddenly morph into a mightily amazing superhero? It's the sound of alarm that galvanizes him to grab his super suit and power gear, and sniff out the source of the wilting odor wafting through the house. What deadly force has such power?

Our hero dashes into his secret elevator, which takes him to ... (No, not a telephone booth...) a secret underground redoubt, where he dons his protective supersuit, complete with red rubber dishwashing gloves! He's ready to report to the Commissioner.

The Commissioner is washing dishes at the sink.

"What is it, Commissioner?" asks Kid Amazing.

"Jimmy--" says the Commissioner. "Kid Amazing," corrects Kid Amazing.

"Kid Amazing," says the Commissioner. "Hear that howling? Could you please see what's going on?"

An evil giant robot? Those space lobsters again? No, only one thing could howl such an annoying howl.

Kid Amazing's arch-nemesis, the Blob!

Kid Amazing breaks out his secret robo-sniffer and tracks the terrible scent to its source--the lair of The Blob. Opening the door, Kid Amazing is almost overcome. It's the Blob's ultimate weapon, the mega monstrous cloud o' stink!

But Kid Amazing is more powerful than any stench. He whips out his own secret weapons, his atomizer of de-stinkifying spray and his wonder wipes, which overcome the smell and the slime, and faces the Blob on her throne bravely. Her horrible howl is almost unhear-ably unbearable, but courageous Kid Amazing knows one more trick to silence The Blob, and he spots what he needs beneath her throne.

The Blob's howl neutralizer.

Kid Amazing swiftly stops her gob with the devilishly clever device. His work here is done.

Every mom (er, Commissioner) needs a Kid Amazing who knows how to strategically deploy a pacifier now and then, and in Josh Schneider's forthcoming Kid Amazing vs. the Blob (Houghton Mifflin Clarion Books, 2017), it's big brother Jimmy on the job, even offering a recommendation that the Commisioner supply a new "stink-containment unit" to the Blob's bottom.

Schneider's narration is appropriately serio-comic, as befits a superhero of such courage and quick thinking, even if Mom does softly suggest that he stop calling his sister The Blob, but with tongue well in cheek Schneider's spoof of caped crusaders comes off with a well-placed smidgen of deadpan dirty diaper parody. Schneider's artwork is bold and bright, with sly touches, as Jimmy's baby sister's howls of AAAAAAAAA wallpaper the entire house with their magnitude, and his final page pictures his bare-bottomed baby sister waving a clean diaper frantically as she seeks out the Commissioner for the final solution to the case. Comic and clever, this one will produce paroxysms of knowing giggles from big brothers and big sisters all over, with a novel twist on the superhero trope to boot.

For more sibling stories, share this one with Marla Frazee's big hits, the source for the movie Boss Baby, now playing at your local cineplex, The Boss Baby and The Bossier Baby. (Read my reviews here.)

Josh Schneider's earlier books include Everybody Sleeps (But Not Fred) (see my 2015 review here) and Tales for Very Picky Eaters.

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