So, it’s Random Acts of Publicity Week — an idea I love — so this week, I’ll be posting book recommendations.
First up is the Zack Proton series by Brian Anderson, a writer in my local Austin area.
When I moved to Austin and started attending the SCBWI meetings here, I kept hearing from people, “You have to read Brian Anderson’s Zack Proton series!” So I was thrilled to meet Brian at the SCBWI booth at the Texas Library Association convention. When he showed me his books, I quickly understood why everyone had been raving about them.
The three-book series follows The Adventures of Commander Zack Proton, the young leader of a spaceship delivering 16 million bags of mail across the galaxy. Unfortunately, when our hero needs the restroom, he accidentally opens the wrong door at the back of his ship — despite numerous signs warning him not to — and falls out. He’s rescued by Omega Chimp, the last chimpanzee who was sent into space. And let the adventures begin…
In book two, The Adventures of Commander Zack Proton and the Warlord of Nibblecheese, the duo must rescue a group of second graders from the renegade band of warrior space mice, who are kidnapping Earth’s teachers and replacing them with robots.
And in book three, The Adventures of Commander Zack Proton and the Wrong Planet, the duo think the’ve finally caught up with Zack’s lost mail ship, but the planet keeps disappearing.
Anderson filled the books with humor that kids ages 7-10 will love, and it’s enhanced beautifully with the illustrations by Doug Holgate. Just like any good picture, Holgate’s illustrations add more to the story. For example, at the beginning of the first book, the text says, “Commander Zack Proton kept a watchful eye on the stars and galaxies whizzing past his window as his intergalactic starship raced toward the far end of the universe.” But the illustrations show our hero in his commander seat reading a book!
The cherry on top of this book is brief interludes in the story, such as comics featuring our intrepid heroes, a recipe for the banana pancakes Omega Chimp’s mom made, and Zack Proton’s Tips for Young Space Heroes, which invariably turn out to be wrong.
Inventive and fun, I highly recommend The Adventures of Commander Zack Proton series. With the mix of text and illustrations, plus the jokes, this middle-grade book series is especially good for boys who are reluctant readers.
Find out more at www.Zack Proton.com
Have you read these? Tell me what you think.