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BRUTE-CAKE by Troy Cummings


From the The Binder of Doom series, volume 1

by Troy Cummings ; illustrated by Troy Cummings

Pub Date: April 30th, 2019
ISBN: 978-1-338-31467-0
Publisher: Branches/Scholastic

The Notebook of Doom series’ Alexander Bopp and the Super Secret Monster Patrol are back with a new host of not-so-scary-monsters for emerging readers.

The school year has ended, the city of Stermont is safe from the monsters that had plagued it, and Alexander has drifted apart from his S.S.M.P. crew. He’s a little at a loss. Alexander’s dad saves the day by signing the monster slayer up for a different kind of S.S.M.P.: the Stermont Summer Maker Program. The public library boasts a summer filled with art, games, music, puppetry, brick building, chess, and, of course, a makerspace. At the library, Alexander meets librarian Ms. Sprinkles, who gives her young patrons a binder in which they can store their amazing creations. Happily, Alexander eventually finds that his friends have also decided to attend the library’s summer program, and the trio finds that their fight to keep Stermont safe from monsters is not, in fact, over. The titular baked good threatens! Fans of the previous series will enjoy this new one as well. The story is easy to follow, with large print, and the numerous grayscale illustrations are humorous, with enough cheeky puns to engage readers transitioning to chapter books. The back of the book includes questions and activities for the classroom as well as eager-reader book clubs. Alexander has dark skin and puffy dark hair, while Rip and Nikki have lighter skin; Ms. Sprinkles has dark skin and a brown Afro.

Good, clean, monstrous fun.

(Paranormal adventure. 6-9)