August 12, 2009

JUNIOR ZOMBIE WEEK: Grampa's Zombie BBQ (Review)


Wiley & Grampa's
Creature Features:
Grampa's Zombie BBQ

By Kirk Scroggs

Little, Brown and Company: 2006



4.5 / 5 zedheads

My second review today is another zombie book in a monster-related humour series for kids. Grampa's Zombie BBQ belongs to the Wiley & Grampa's Creature Features series of books that follow Wiley, a 12 or 13 year old boy who is very good at science, in his various misadventures that involve all sorts of monsters and creatures.

Wiley's often helped out by his crazy Grampa, his Gramma, his friend Jubal, and Merle the cat. In Zombie BBQ, Grampa's world famous BBQ event is turned upside down when the residents of the local cemetery decide to unearth themselves and come down for a bite to eat. When the BBQ chicken runs out, the zombies start to crave something a bit more human.

The book is a series of gags (often visual ones represented in the accompanying illustrations), and the writing keeps things amusing by offering up strange juxtapositions (like Nuns playing volleyball with Bikers) and comedic character names (i.e. Betty Hubris). But unlike the other book I reviewed this week, Monster Manor: Runaway Zombies, the story is pretty thin and the art is pretty basic and dull in black-and-white. I appreciate Grampa's Zombie BBQ for its absurdist humour and the high-level of undead zombie content, but I can't think of much more to say about it.

I liked it, you'll like it, and you'll probably get some good laughs, but it probably won't stay with you as highly memorable .

It is, however, probably the only place you're going to see a zombie's nose fall into a bowl of potato salad. There's also a brief appearance of someone named "Old Man Romero." I wonder who that guy's supposed to be.

Check out Grampa's Zombie BBQ. If you like absurd humour, you'll probably enjoy it just as much as your kids will.