The latest NOTEBOOK OF DOOM installment is great fun for early readers!

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My nephew has loved Troy Cummings’ Notebook of Doom series for a couple years now. So when I noticed the eleventh book in the series, SNEEZE OF THE OCTO-SCHNOZZ, was available for review, I had to check it out.

The Notebook of Doom series features Alexander and his friends – members of the exclusive S.S.M.P. (Super Secret Monster Patrol) – as they hunt down monsters in their neighborhood and school.

In OCTO-SCHNOZZ, there’s a honking, stinky monster afoot – and it’s stealing rotten food! Alexander and his friends must work together to take down this smelly fiend, chasing it all the way to their newest member, Dottie’s, mini golf birthday party. If that’s not bad enough, Alexander is forced to attend private classes with their mean – and possibly monstrous – principal, Ms. Vanderpants.

I definitely see the appeal of this quirky series. Full of humor, entertaining maps, and fun illustrations, SNEEZE will definitely appeal to reluctant readers. Plus, as a book that appears to be aimed at young boys, I was pleased to see multiple girl characters – with agency – in the story as well!

I do think that this book would be best appreciated by fans of the entire series. OCTO-SCHNOZZ begins a bit abruptly without much context about the characters or their monster hunting society. Events from previous books are referenced (specifically, an evil teacher – who was really a shape-shifting blob – stealing their monster notebook). I think it would be easier to understand and follow for people who have read the previous books. OCTO-SCHNOZZ also ends with some plot points left unresolved; there will definitely be future books in the series. I wish we had a little more closure around Dottie’s odd behavior and their mysterious principal.  

This is a quick, silly read that both frequent and reluctant readers will enjoy. I recommend it for readers in grades 1-3. Be sure to check out SNEEZE OF THE OCTO-SCHNOZZ, available everywhere on December 27th

4.0 / 5.0