by Stuart Jensen
Published on: May 21, 2019
This title is crazy. But this middle grade sci fi adventure was so much fun to read. A lot of pure imagination went into this story and there were several times I could picture the author asking himself something like “exactly why can’t lobsters like Disco? I liked Gloria Gaynor’s ‘I Will Survive’ – why wouldn’t they like it too?” He probably didn’t think that, but still.
‘My old Beaverman hat,’ said Xavi fondly, remembering the countless times he played superheroes, inventing superpowers and fighting imaginary bad guys. But after a case of mistaken identity sucks him into a secret underground world of robots, he must become Beaverman for real and fight against an invasion of giant alien Disco Lobsters if he is ever going to get home.
At the beginning of the story Xavi (Beaverman) and his friend Milo (Breath Boy) are playing together. Both of them are in agreement that their postman is definitely a robot – one with red laser eyes. Because the boys were on school break with nothing else to do they decide to be superheroes and follow him, which is when they run into Blockboy (a kid from a nearby village). Blockboy completely disagrees with them and says that it is pretty obvious that the postman is an alien and definitely not a robot. Luckily for them the postman was nearby to deny all of this until the boys let it slip that they were actually superheroes and not just regular kids. With that cleared up, the postman feels comfortable enough to then let his secret out – he is indeed a robot and he’s not alone.
The three boys are then taken into the underground tunnels where the robot’s home command is on Earth. There the boys find out that their assistance is needed to go to another planet and get some keys that were stolen by a malfunctioning robot. The keys are important because they are what is needed to help power the gate that keeps the Disco Lobsters from coming to Earth and destroying it. Once they are on the alien planet, the boys get split up with Xavi by himself. However, he is not alone for very long and soon meets another superhero, Super Bo, a frog-man (head like a frog and body like a man) and they quickly become friends. They also run across other superheroes as well as the Disco Lobsters and have a few other adventures before coming back to Earth and saving the day.
One of the themes I noticed was about friendship and bully’s. Who is your friend? What would you do for someone who doesn’t act very friendly toward you? In Beaverman: Attack of the Lobsters, there is both a child and adult bully identified. Blockboy isn’t all that nice to Xavi – he calls him names and makes fun of him. But we also see the same thing occur among the adults – one of the Knights of the Diabolical superheroes taunts Bo leaving Xavi to recognize it as something Blockboy would do to him and wonder why it was so difficult to be kind.
The story also has a lot of fun playing words by spelling things backwards or putting unique made-up words together to sound like something funny in English.
Overall, this was a fun, highly imaginative story the author has created. It was fun to read and made me smile the entire time.
Be sure to check out the other Marvelous Middle Grade Monday posts, hosted by Greg Pattridge at Always in the Middle.
Rating: 4.5 stars