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Doc Wilde and the Frogs of Doom

by Tim Byrd

     

Move over, Doc Savage. Get out of the way, Indiana Jones. Make room, Artemis Fowl. There's a new adventure hero / family in town! It's Dr. Spartacus Wilde and his precocious children, Wren and Brian, who jump off the pages of Tim Byrd's debut novel for tweeners called†Doc Wilde and the Frogs of Doom. Byrd has begun what I foresee as a long-running, very popular series for young readers. In this initial installment, the Wildes set out to rescue Grandpa Wilde, who has gone missing in a rain forest somewhere. They are accompanied by two associates: Declan mac Coul, who is skilled in operating and maintaining all of the high-tech machines that Doc Wilde has invented, and highly educated Phineas Bartlett, the family attorney and majordomo (butler) for the Wilde estate. Soon, the rescue party finds itself in the thick of frog creatures, gigantic and small, amphibian and manlike, and in desperate need of rescue themselves. But the frog creatures soon find that the clever Wildes are much more than meet the eye.

I was thoroughly excited by†Doc Wilde and the Frogs of Doom. It did indeed remind me of old Doc Savage comics and even a film made from one of the Doc Savage adventures. Not only was there non-stop adventure but there were interesting characters, especially the children who were trained in martial arts, history, and several languages. Though I reviewed an ARC, I was enchanted by the way the book was presented, especially the cliffhangers at the end of many chapters. Phrases were written in large print and different fonts, sometimes looking as if they were handwritten additions in a journal. Some pages even had part of an illustration on an edge, such as a bulging frog eye or a scary claw.

Doc Wilde and the Frogs of Doom†is a great read for kids. Though some of the blurbs on the back of the book tout this as an adventure novel for boys, its appeal is certainly not restricted to them. Wren is definitely a very clever and capable little girl and just as courageous as her brother, Brian. This story will most certainly appeal to girls who are as enamored of narrow escapes, crazy gadgets, and unusual creatures. I can't wait for more adventures from Doc Wilde and his intrepid family.

The Book

Putnam Juvenile
May 14, 2009
ARC of hardcover
0399247831 / 978-0399247835
Tweener fantasy
More at Amazon.com
Excerpt
NOTE:

The Reviewer

Janie Franz
Reviewed 2009
NOTE: Reviewer Janie Franz is the author of Freelance Writing: Itís a Business, Stupid!and co-author of The Ultimate Wedding Reception Book and The Ultimate Wedding Ceremony Book.
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