Jonny Jakes Investigates: The Hamburgers of Doom

illus. by Alan Brown. 240p. Capstone. Mar. 2016. pap. $8.95. ISBN 9781496526809.
Gr 3–6—Jonny Jakes may not be the undercover reporter his school wants, but he's the undercover reporter that his school needs, no matter what Mr. Hardy says. Jonny writes for the banned school newspaper, The Woodford Word, and tackles the big issues using his other pen name, Fiona Friend. But when the paper goes too far and a new principal comes to town, it's not just Jonny who's in trouble. Mr. Jones seems great, but there's just one small problem—he's an alien. An alien whom Jonny is sure is up to something quite nefarious. Together with classmate Norris, unlikely ally Julie, the smartest girl in school Sally, and their drama teacher, Ms. Briars, the rag tag group must undo Mr. Jones's mind control and stop him from consuming their school and possibly the planet. A diary-style format interspersed with cartoon illustrations and clippings from The Woodword Word keep pages interesting and particularly appealing for reluctant readers. Full of action and colorful humor, this novel will have kids anxiously flipping pages to discover the fate of Jonny and his friends.
VERDICT Jonny Jakes and his antics will keep readers more than entertained and keep this book flying off shelves.

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