Nelson: Pumpkin and Aliens is the first in a new series of early chapter books from Australian DJ, food writer and podcaster, Andrew Levins. This is a brilliant chapter book that caters for the needs of children who are ready to begin reading longer and more challenging books but demand a read that is still highly illustrated.
Nelson Hunter hates everything about vegetables. He does not want to eat them, he does not want to smell them and he definitely does not want to be eating them. The worst vegetable of all…pumpkin. Unfortunately for Nelson, his grandparents are quite adept at growing vegetables and have taken to regularly turning up at his parents house with a car load of their prize-winning pumpkins which his dad takes great delight in turning into soups, risotto, ravioli and pie.
Luckily, Nelson has come up with the perfect plan to avoid eating such disgusting meals. But when his grandma catches on to his food disappearing antics, Nelson finds himself forced to eat pumpkin with very surprising consequences. Pumpkins make Nelson super strong. And when a group of aliens that Nelson invented for a class talk actually turn up and invade his school, he will need all of his pumpkin-power to save the school and its teachers from being eaten…
Vegetables, superpowers, likeable characters and slimy purple aliens on a mission to get brunch make for a disgusting, gross-out read that children will love. The fast-paced action is wildly over the top and is a great deal of fun. Views on pumpkin as a vegetable of choice to eat may well be influenced by Nelson and his antics. In amongst the mayhem are messages on the importance of eating your vegetables, telling the truth and the power of words over physical actions.
The book is highly accessible and its smaller size is perfect for little hands. Inside, readers will find large and spaced out text, simple sentences, familiar vocabulary and plenty of amusing black and white illustrations with flashes of orange - the perfect colour for a story about pumpkins!
Recommended for 6+.