Zoopertown: X-Ray Rabbit
Jem Packer and Emily Fox
Bloomsbury Children’s Books
This is the first of a new series featuring a group of animals, the Zooperheroes residents of Zoopertown. We meet the five Zoopers as they sit at the table about to consume a delicious breakfast when suddenly toast, cornflakes, waffles and pancakes all disappear simultaneously. But that merely heralds a much bigger catastrophe for as the residents of the town gather in the park for the mayor’s birthday picnic it’s discovered that all the goodies have gone, even Go-Go Gorilla’s scrumptious banana birthday cake.
To assist with his crisis Go-Go doesn’t call out Zoom-Zoom Zebra, Zip-Zap Giraffe, Snap-Crack Croc, Crash-Bang Koala; he knows that the only Zooperhero for this task is X-Ray Rabbit with her X-Ray power. Off she zooms towards the park on her vehicle – a Zooper Scooter – of course, but en route she notices, thanks to her sharp-sightedness, a trail of banana skins that lead her right out of town, through the forest to … the Atrocious Tower of Terror.
Therein resides the dastardly food-snatching baboon: he’s about to consume a birthday cake and it certainly isn’t his. Furious, not only about not being invited to the party, but by the intrusion of X-Ray Rabbit, he zaps her, trapping her in his stinky lair. Is she doomed or can she escape the clutches of Kaboom Baboon and even save the celebrations?
Perhaps, with some timely assistance from her fellow Zooperheroes.
I suspect little human would-be superheroes will relish this action-packed tale, welcome the arrival of its super-cast each with a special personal super-power and be eager for further adventures. Jem Packer’s use of wordplay throughout the narrative adds to the fun and Emily Fox’s dramatic scenes
especially those of the endearing quintet engaging in the high-octane operation are full of comic-style panache.