This week I review Zombie Kid, recently published middle-grade fiction by J. Scott Savage. This is a book that should appeal to readers in the eight to twelve age range.
J. Scott Savage's Case File #13: Zombie Kid (published by HarperCollins, September 2013) is a fast-paced, action-packed adventure story of a boy called Nick and his two friends. They like to call themselves the Three Monsterteers because of their love of monsters and the amazing monster costumes they create for Halloween. The story will delight kids who enjoy a lighthearted approach to “ghoulies and ghosties and long-leggedy beasties and things that go bump in the night.” Nick’s visit to his aunt’s funeral in Louisiana has the outlandish outcome of turning him into a zombie, the victim of a voodoo curse. Unless Nick wants to end his days as a disintegrating zombie—parts of him literally start to drop off—he and his resourceful friends must figure out how to break the curse. And, of course, adding to their already huge challenge is the fact that time is running out for Nick. The story is clever, deliciously illogical, and funny, with a good helping of the gross that is sure to please boys. The book’s cliffhanger chapters, boy heroes, humor, and fast pace should appeal to reluctant readers. The readability level may put off readers with a limited vocabulary, but that just offers a great opportunity to older siblings and parents to read with, and to, younger kids. Reading with kids is always a good thing to do to encourage reluctant readers to expand their vocabulary and spend more time with well-written books.
Next week I interview the author!