Frank Einstein and the Antimatter Motor
by Scieszka, Jon; Biggs, Brian (ILT)

In his Grandpa Al's garage workshop, child genius Frank Einstein tries to invent a robot that can learn on its own, and after an accident brings wisecracking Klink and overly expressive Klank to life, they set about helping Frank perfect his Antimatter Motor until his archnemesis, T. Edison, steals the robots for his doomsday plan.

Jon Scieszka has sold more than 11 million books, including The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales, The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs, the Time Warp Trio series, Guys Read, Spaceheadz, and most recently, Battle Bunny with Mac Barnett. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.
Brian Biggs has collaborated with Garth Nix, Cynthia Rylant, and Katherine Applegate, in addition to working on his own picture books in his Everything Goes series. He lives in Philadelphia.

*Starred Review* In this start to a new series, young Frank Einstein and his trusted pal Watson foil the dastardly plans of archnemesis T. Edison and his financial advisor, Mr. Chimp. Along the way, they rely on the material assistance of Frank's genius robot Klink and not-so-genius-but-affectionate robot Klank and the abiding support of Frank's Grampa Al. The high jinks begin at a school science prize competition and continue after Edison steals Frank's antimatter technology, ultimately leaving the fate of the world hanging in the balance. Scieszka soaks the narrative in real science, from a narrative structure built on the principles of scientific inquiry to throwaway jokes about apes and teeth. Literary allusions abound, including a principled invocation of Isaac Asimov's three laws of robotics as articulated in I, Robot. The busy book design features imagery on almost every spread; Biggs' full-page comic illustrations alternate with spot drawings, numbered scientific figures, diagrams, and blueprints. The clever use of typefaces adds to the visual appeal, with distinctive fonts for the two robots' dialogue and pictographic ASL hand letters for Mr. Chimp (with a key in the back). In the final analysis, this buoyant, tongue-in-cheek celebration of the impulse to "keep asking questions and finding your own answers" fires on all cylinders. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

Scieszka mixes science and silliness again to great effect.Frank Einstein, kid genius and inventor, is staying with his grandfather while his parents travel to Antarctica. That's just fine with Frank; he and his sidekick, Watson, have inventing to do, and Grampa Al's fix-it shop is the perfect place to do science. Frank is hoping to win the Midville Science Prize because Grampa won when he was a kid...and because the prize money will let Frank save Grampa's shop from the bill collectors. Frank's attempt to build a SmartBot fails, but overnight, a spark ignites the brain he's created for the bot, and the next morning he finds two very different robots in his workshop. Now he's got Klink, a smart, self-assembled robot who can learn, and Klank, who's really into hugging. Frank doesn't feel right entering Klink and Klank in the contest since they assembled themselves, but together with Watson, the four of them can surely some up with something great. Only evil, rival child genius T. Edison stands in their way, and he'll stop at nothing. Scieszka launches a six-book series with a likable protagonist and a good supporting cast. Science facts are slipped into the story on nearly every page, and Biggs' two-color drawings are the C12H22O11 on the cookie.Less wacky (and more instructive) than Scieszka's Spaceheadz series-but just as much fun. (Science fiction/humor. 8-12) Copyright Kirkus 2014 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

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