Sunday, June 4, 2017

The Rise of the Rusty Robo-Cat!

The Rise of the Rusty Robo-Cat!
written and illustrated by Mike Lowery
2017 (Workman Publishing)
Source: Review copy provided by the publisher

Mr. Kitty Flakes took all of my aluminum foil! I can't wrap up my leftover sauerkraut egg rolls. 

Yeah, it's getting pretty weird in the city so get your pencil sharpened so you can help the Doodle Adventures Society solve this case of cats behaving badly. What? You say you're just a reader and can't help? Wrong-o! It's your drawing talent that's going to save us all. Citizens from all over the city have been reporting their cats doing strange things like stealing hangers and taking light bulbs out of houses. Why are they doing this? That's a mystery that you and Agent 86B37, also known as Carl the Duck, will have to solve. But first, you need to draw a snack for Carl's pet cat Herman who seems to be the only feline that is behaving. Carl tries to capture one of the misbehaving cats, but is unsuccessful. It also seems like they are hypnotized. Fortunately, you and your artistic skills draw something that creates mud so you can follow their tracks out of town. As you track them, you find out that the cats are going inside a big fake mountain with a kitty door. Has a fake mountain ever been a good thing? What's inside the metal mountain? A giant Robo-Cat! It's driven by an evil genius cat who's speaking in a broken syntax. Quick, draw a missing part for the cat-to-human translator! Having fixed the translator with your impressive sketching, you find out this evil genius wants to build an army of Robo-Cats using old tuna cans and other materials to take over the world. Can our planet be saved? It's up to you and your sharp #2 pencil.

This third book in the Doodle Adventures series is a whole mess of silly fun. Just what I needed on a Sunday night. We talk in education circles about creating engaging activities for students and here is Mike Lowery doing just that. The humor is spot on for elementary students (and adults who never grew up) and the story has a classic hero vs. villain plot. This book could be the antidote for a reader that is having a hard time getting started independently.

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