Thursday 7 February 2013

Toocool: Series 5

Toocool: Series 5 by Phil Kettle, illustrated by Tom Jellett (Ford Street Publishing)

The Big Bash
ISBN 9781921665783
ISBN 9781921665790
The Interview
ISBN 9781921665806
Round ‘Em Up
ISBN 9781921665769
The Race
ISBN 9781921665776
PB RRP$ 9.95 each
Reviewed by Anastasia Gonis

The highly successful and popular Toocool series for age 7+ readers is now up to book 39. In this set of five books, Toocool and his gang of friends, mainly Spike his buddy, Marcy and Bella, and neighbour Wong, experience all sorts of amazing adventures due to Toocool’s irrepressible enthusiasm for life. He believes he can do anything better than anyone else, therefore he tries everything.

In The Big Bash, the Browns plays cricket against The Legends, Toocool’s team. Bad Billy Brown is determined to squash the opposing players. But Toocool believes he is a star of the future and goes out with that in mind and lots of attitude. But Marcy has a hilarious and outrageous plan where anything can happen!

Pirates are what the group want to become after Toocool finds a treasure map in his cereal box. He believes treasure is buried on Duck Island. Is it possible, or is this one of his incredible theories that will lead to wild adventures?

Everything Toocool does is ‘exciting, unique and special’ just like he is. We learn this and many things about Toocool and his friends when he is interviewed for a television program by Ms Stickybeak in The Interview.

In The Race, a planned race across Duck Pond against Marcy, Bella, and Spike turns wild when Toocool’s supercharged Jet Ski, built with Wong, becomes airborne. But will he win the race as he believes he will?

Toocool and Spike are invited to Uncle Buck’s farm as jackaroos to help with the cattle round up in Round ‘Em Up. They become responsible for the feeding and care of a calf that loses its mother, and turn out to be a great help to the team rounding up the cattle. But when camping out means eating tinned baked beans and sleeping close to the campfire, this presents a different set of problems.

This is a terrific and clever series of chapter books with priceless illustrations accompanying the text. The uninhibited bunch of characters are wild and interesting; full of positive energy and life. Every chapter is an entertainment unit. Toocool is reminiscent of Dennis the Menace, and Wong like the long suffering Mr Wilson. Each book has a Glossary of terms for specific words that readers might not know, and every title always ends with up with a list of jokes as the last delicious offering.

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