Monday, July 6, 2020

Review - Monkey With a Tool Belt Blasts Off!

Monkey With a Tool Belt Blasts Off!
by Chris Monroe
Date: 2020
Publisher: Carolrhoda Books
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 40
Format: e-book
Source: NetGalley

Come along on an out-of-this-world journey with Chico Bon Bon in this rollicking new adventure from author and illustrator Chris Monroe.

Oh no, the Moon Malt machine at the Superstar Space Station and Snack Bar is broken! The ever-resourceful Chico Bon Bon and his trusty sidekick Clark the elephant ZOOM to the rescue. While working on the malfunctioning Moon Malt machine, they discover myriad other things in need of fixing, including a hatch and a latch and a droid's underwear. And then--FWHOOSH! KA-BOING!--what was that? It's the cutest alien in the universe, and she's stranded at the space station due to a broken down spaceship!

Thanks to Chico's know-how and his extensive tool collection there's a fix for every problem under the sun--and beyond!

(synopsis from Goodreads)

I'm really not the audience for this. I'm sure some kids will enjoy it, but the story--about a technically minded monkey who helps rescue an alien--didn't interest me all that much. It's obviously intended for very young children, and doesn't offer much for older readers (or the parents who'll end up reading this to their kids).

There's nothing really wrong with the story, other than it being a little predictable. The choice to rhyme some parts but not others is a strange one; I'm not a fan of books that do this. I'm also having trouble with the illustrations. This book really needs to be read in a fairly large format, because there are lots of tiny details in the pictures that could easily be missed. (I have a feeling the e-book doesn't really do it justice.)

The book is fine for what it is, and if kids are a fan of the character, they'll probably enjoy it. I didn't find it particularly memorable, however, and I would probably only recommend it to very young children.

Thank you to NetGalley and Carolrhoda Books for providing a digital ARC.

Premise: 2/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 3/5
Illustrations: 2/5
Originality: 3/5

Enjoyment: 2/5

Overall: 2.33 out of 5

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