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By the winner of the first Eleanor Cameron/Golden Duck Award
Theora Theremin needs a subject for her science project and at the last minute decides to practice the scientific method to determine whether the storied local lake monster, Big Phil, is real or not. While studying the water's surface in the company of her pesky younger brother, Verb, she finds herself witnessing the emergence, not of a prehistoric creature, but of the submarine of the world-famous scientist Dr. Übermind. It is merely the first of many unusual meetings that ensue, as Theora and Verb find themselves whisked away to Burger Buckeroo, where the manager, a giant cockroach from the moon who's also an aspiring journalist, enlists Theora to enter the Cavalcade of Loveliness, an intergalactic beauty pageant being held on Neptune. When they reach this far planet, things grow ever stranger as Theora is enlisted to hunt down the Beast of the Mall and then to help stop her very own science teacher from his diabolical plan to rule the universe's pop music charts.
The laughs keep coming in this science fiction comedy, which sends up everything from fast food franchises to Jonny Quest.
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Quentin Dodd's previous novel was Beatnik Rutabagas from Beyond the Stars. He lives in Crawfordsville, Indiana.
Gr. 5-8. As in Dodd's Beatnik Rutabagas from Outer Space (2003), the plot of his second screwball sf comedy is pretty much beside the point. Suffice it to say that the story involves an intergalactic beauty pageant on Neptune; that a junior-high girl named Theora Theramin is recruited to compete for Earth; and that Theora's skills as a punk-rock drummer foil a mass-hypnosis plot masterminded by her science teacher. The contemporary frame of reference keeps this B-movie send-up from seeming overly nostalgic. In addition to the girl-band theme, there's a running joke about cockroaches and fast-food restaurants, and Theora's task in the talent competition is to kill the "Beast of the (Shopping) Mall." Though epic frivolity is the main attraction here, female genre fans will also appreciate Dodd's decision to feature a girl protagonist--especially one like Theora, whose unflappable aura and deadpan wit have gender-neutral appeal. Hand this to those slightly geeky, goofy kids (you know who they are) whose tastes and reading level fall somewhere between Dav Pilkey's Captain Underpants series and Douglas Adams' adult sf. Jennifer Mattson
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Book Description Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR), 2004. Hardcover. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # mon0001085296
Book Description Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR), 2004. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0374361193
Book Description Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR), 2004. Hardcover. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # DADAX0374361193