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“. . . Strangeness helps us be creative,” Mr. Sage. ―Looniverse Meltdown Madness
by David Lubar
Ed wants to join the soccer team, but first he has to sell chocolate bars. But when he tells his friend to run “as fast as possible,” his friend runs so fast that the chocolate bars melt. Ed must figure out how to get out of this gooey mess. Is there any way for him to earn the money he needs to join the team?
Meltdown Madness is a super silly story that beginning readers will enjoy. The humorous black-and-white illustrations that appear on every page help readers visualize the strange events that happen to Ed. Talking coins, miniature horses, and rows of corn all come to life through the illustrations. Ed’s mishaps show the importance of choosing words carefully and teach the meaning of various sayings such as “don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.”
Even though the story line is silly and humorous, Ed demonstrates problem solving skills as well as taking responsibility for his actions. When Ed is unsure how to solve his problem, he seeks out adult advice and continues to brainstorm ideas. After Ed accidently breaks two windows, he doesn’t complain about having to earn the money to pay for them. Meltdown Madness is a straightforward story that is worth the read.
- When Ed’s sisters give their toy doll bangs, Ed grabs the doll head. “The hair over its forehead had started to sizzle, like lit fuses. . . I hurled it at the window. It smashed through the glass, landed on the lawn, rolled halfway to the street, and exploded.”
Drugs and Alcohol
- Ed finds a coin that gives him “the power to make strange things happen. Sometimes strange things even happen when I wasn’t trying to make them happen.”
- Ed’s sisters have a toy doll head that allows them to try different hairstyles. When Ed’s sister makes three pigtails on the toy, “three pigs appeared out of nowhere.” As the sisters make various hairstyles, strange things happen.
- Ed’s brother makes a thermostat that can change the weather. When his brother turns the dial to comfort zone, “the air grew cooler.” Ed’s brother is the only one that can make the thermostat work.
- When Ed says, “money talks,” Ed and his friend can hear coins. Ed “held the coins near my ear. Lincoln and Washington were arguing about who was more honest.”