Wonkenstein (Creature from My Closet Series #1)

( 15 )

Overview

Twelve-year-old underachiever Rob has better things to do than read. His parents give him lots of books but most of them just end up in the messy pile of junk he keeps locked in his closet that once doubled as a makeshift science laboratory. One day, Rob hears weird sounds coming from behind his closet door and discovers a funny little creature that seems to be a cross between two characters from books he’s tried to ignore. He names him Wonkenstein.

Keeping track of “Wonk” is ...

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Wonkenstein (Creature from My Closet Series #1)

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Overview

Twelve-year-old underachiever Rob has better things to do than read. His parents give him lots of books but most of them just end up in the messy pile of junk he keeps locked in his closet that once doubled as a makeshift science laboratory. One day, Rob hears weird sounds coming from behind his closet door and discovers a funny little creature that seems to be a cross between two characters from books he’s tried to ignore. He names him Wonkenstein.

Keeping track of “Wonk” is hard work. But with help from friends and a little off-the-wall magic, Rob and Wonkenstein’s crazy adventures set the stage for great laughs . . . and Rob might even read some good books along the way.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

Twelve-year-old Rob isn't a reluctant reader; he's an intensely resistant reader. To rid the books his parents give him from his room, he stashes them in his closet, which is already stuffed with a makeshift science lab. Then one day, weird sounds from the closet startle him. Through some strange alchemy, a hybrid of two book characters has been born in his closet! What happens next will surprise you just as much as he surprises Rob and his friends. A diverting adventure from the author of the popular Leven Thumps fantasy series.

Children's Literature - Annie Laura Smith
How do you encourage a twelve-year-old underachiever to read when he prefers to do anything else but that? Having a creative, motivating creature, Wonkenstein, in his closet is a start. This fun adventure of a boy named Robert Columbo Burnside may well send reluctant readers to the library. To vision Rob's monster's appearance think of a hybrid Willy Wonka and Frankenstein. This combination makes for an original and funny character whose antics will intrigue young readers. Whimsical black and white child-like illustrations (although the entire text and illustrations are printed in blue) are presented in the first person, and will captivate the reader further as Rob narrates events with the help of these sketches. Although Rob wants to keep Wonka a secret from his family and friends, he does become rather attached to him. Skye transitions from reality into fiction seamlessly throughout the story, and will keep even teen readers engaged in the story. Potterwookiee: The Creature From My Closet will be a Book II sequel. Reviewer: Annie Laura Smith
School Library Journal
Gr 4–6—Rob Burnside is as average as a 12-year-old can be. His only claim to fame is that he is distantly related to the person who invented sideburns. His mother is always coaxing him to read, but all the books she buys for him end up in a jumble in his closet, which also doubles as his "laboratory." The sameness of Rob's life skids to a halt when someone inexplicable bursts from his lab one day. At first Rob has no idea who this little guy is, but then a trip to the library determines that he is a bizarre mash-up of Willy Wonka and Frankenstein. Rob must go to great-and often embarrassing-lengths to conceal "Wonkenstein," because he'll be in huge trouble if his parents find out what a mess his closet is. Written in a journal/comic format from the perspective of an underachieving narrator, this book owes an obvious debt to Jeff Kinney's "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" series (Abrams). The drawings don't pack a big comedic punch, but the writing is quite funny and has a lot of laugh-out-loud moments. And while the format and the protagonist might not be inventive, the idea of a hybrid Willy Wonka/Frankenstein character is original and hilarious. This book will be a hit with kids who can't get enough of the Wimpy Kid.—Amy Holland, Irondequoit Public Library, NY
Kirkus Reviews

Skye adds another Wimpy Kid to the growing bandwagon.

Sounding almost too nerdy to be true ("I'm kind of like a backup singer in the song of life"), 12-year-old Rob relates his tale in the now-requisite mix of block-print–type prose and line-drawn cartoon figures with punch lines or commentary in dialogue balloons. A string of hectic events follows the appearance of a manic mannequin from the midden of books and old science projects in his closet. He describes it as "a small, weird man who came up to just above my waist. He looked like two different people who had been smashed together." Comical chases, pranks, interactions with friends dependable and otherwise, mortifying mishaps in front of girls and like standard fare later, Rob has overcome severe stage fright to mend fences with classmate Janae and others by reciting a poem of apology at a school talent show. He has also been turned on to books by his discovery that the mannequin is an amalgam of Willy Wonka and Frankenstein's monster. In the end, Wonkenstein slips back into the closet—and out springs an even smaller Harry Potter/Chewbacca blend. Sequels, anyone?

Likely to be lost in the crowd, but comfy antics for readers who don't probably much like reading—which, one thinks, is exactly the point.(Fantasy. 9-11)

From the Publisher
“There’s enough humor here to elicit at least a few guffaws from even the most literary averse.” —BCCB

“[A] highly amusing new series starter.” —Booklist

“The idea of a hybrid Willy Wonka/Frankenstein character is original and hilarious.” —School Library Journal

“Comfy antics for readers who don’t probably much like reading.” —Kirkus Reviews

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780805092684
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
  • Publication date: 9/27/2011
  • Series: Creature from My Closet Series , #1
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 240
  • Sales rank: 89,067
  • Age range: 9 - 12 Years
  • Lexile: 860L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Obert Skye

Obert Skye is the author of the bestselling children's fantasy adventure series Leven Thump. He lives in Idaho. [abituneven.com]

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 15 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(12)

4 Star

(3)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 15 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 21, 2011

    Genuinely Clever

    As an 18-year-old female, no one would peg me as the target audience for this book. The fact that I thoroughly enjoyed it is reason enough for you to go and buy it. With a really great plot line, a (surprisingly) subtle development of the main character, and terribly funny writing, this book is a gem. Obert Skye has already proved himself as a notable children's author, and this book won't let you down.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 21, 2011

    Incredible read!

    I loved this book. It may be written for a 10 year old (I'm actually in college...) but I loved it nonetheless. The pictures and concept are completely original. It is in the genre of books like "Diary of a Wimpy Kid", but it is on a completely different level. It has an exciting and hilarious plot line, the characters are outstanding and I laughed out loud on every page. If you only buy one book for the rest of your life, I say buy "Wonkenstein." You'll never question your purchase.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 4, 2013

    Recommend

    My 10 year old son really liked this book

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 20, 2012

    I highly recomend this, it's very funy.

    You will like this book if you like comics. The creature that comes out does weird things like talking when Robert brings him to school in his backpack. I reccomend this to third & fourth graders.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 23, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Great Read, Great Illustrations

    Robert Burnside is a twelve year old with a problem. No, besides the funny name, or his goofy younger brother, or his older sister, or his parents. That's just the normal stuff. He also has a funny little creature that came out of his closet. True, it almost popped out of the overstuffed closet where Robert throws everything. The problem is Robert doesn't know what it is or what to do with it. It looks like something Dr. Frankenstein might have made in Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory. Worst of all, it won't go back into the closet and it seems to keep getting Robert in trouble. The book is easy to read with lots of cool illustrations to help with the laughs. The book was provided for review by Macmillan Children's Publishing Group.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 19, 2014

    AwS Awsome sauce

    Best series ever and if you liked it try 1-Diary of a wimpy kid 2-Captain underpants and 3-Wings of fire or Percy Jackson

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 15, 2014

    My 31 year old loved it!

    I finaly got my son reading his first chapter book!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 8, 2014

    Read my review

    Soooo good best book ever when is the next book coming out?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2014

    Madn

    Super book

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 9, 2013

    BEST BOOK EVER!!!!!!!!!!

    NOT a wast of time.It's a must read book. Best author ever!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 21, 2013

    My 11 year old son loved this book. He is not a big reader, but

    My 11 year old son loved this book. He is not a big reader, but enjoys these type of books in the same theme as Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Origami Yoda and Captain Underpants. It was a fast, easy read for him, but really enjoyable!

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  • Posted May 31, 2012

    My 3rd grader loved it!

    My son loves books that have funny sketches/drawings. He is a fan of captain underpants,diary of a wimpy kid, and the series starting with "my life as a.....". Great book, cannot wait for next book in series.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 2, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 6, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

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