by Daniel Pinkwater ‧ RELEASE DATE: May 8, 1984
Can Pinkwater--dare Pinkwater--out-silly the silliness of The Snarkout Boys and the Avocado of Death (1982)? He certainly gives it a try. This time high-school sophomores Waiter Gait (the occasional narrator), Winston Bongo, and Rat Matthews take time off from their nightly ""snarking"" (secret moviegoing) to stop in at the beatnik-style Dharma Buns Coffee House--where there's a werewolf-scare in the kitchen. Is there indeed a werewolf on the prowl--or just a pseudo-werewolf. . . or what? And why does the wolfman flit in and out of rich-girl Rat's music room? Well, some very freeform sleuthing leads the trio to the Howling Frog bookstore and to phantomologist K. E. Kelman, son of werewolf-proofer Lydia LaZonga--""known, in her day, as the world's foremost ghost finder, spook chaser, hoodoo remover, and general, all around, freestyle psychic. That is my mommy."" But Ms. LaZonga's vibes tell her that master criminal Wallace Nussbaum is somehow behind the werewolf panic! So all the characters gather, more or less coincidentally, at the ""Deadly Nightshade Diner--We Never Close"" to discuss the Nussbaum threat, with dubious help from ""great detective"" Osgood Sigerson and the Honorable Lama Lumpo Smythe-Finkel. And eventually, after a mini-history of drive-in movies and revelations re the Deadly Nightshade's delicious borgelnuskies, there's a wild showdown at the Garden of Earthly Bliss Drive-In and Pizzeria--featuring the terrifying disembodied voice of Nussbaum himself: ""Listen, fools! My werewolf cavorts. I, Wallace Nussbaum, creator of the werewolf, and with whom the werewolf is in cahoots, cavort also. The Mitusibishi Medium-Range Pizza Chef spits hot cheese at mine enemies. Sigerson is a dumb-dumb.' Etc. Like Avocado of Death: more chaotic than inspired in its giddiness--but the very hippest of youngsters will find hilarious literary/movie allusions, dandy Beat-poetry parodies, and mucho amusement in a Mel Brooks/Woody Allen/Rocky-and-Bullwinlde vein.
Pub Date: May 8, 1984
Page Count: -
Publisher: Lothrop, Lee & Shepard
Review Posted Online: N/A
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 1984
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