by Tom Angleberger
196 pages of laugh-out-loud fun
You know from the cover, the subtitle (or, how Jodie O’Rodeo and her wonder horse (and some nerdy kid) saved the U.S. presidential election from a mad genius criminal mastermind), the end pages and the title page that this book will make you snicker – at least.
Lenny Junior (the nerdy kid) begins his story with a warning. “Don’t ever buy a fake mustache as Sven’s Fair Price Store.” He goes on to explain that is an awesome place for fake noses or thumbs or fake laughter machines, but not mustaches. They are TOO good because they’re made from real Belgian mustache hair (apparently men grow their mustaches for a year before cutting them off to sell to the Heidelberg Novelty Company) and being real hair are expensive. “But they’re worth it…if you really want a good fake mustache – which you don’t! It’ll only lead to trouble. That’s what I’m trying to tell you.”
Just after Lenny Junior and his only friend, Casper, go to Sven’s strange things happen in Hairsprinkle. There are bank robberies, corporate takeovers and fixed elections. Lenny knows Casper is the culprit. The bank security camera clearly show that the ringleader is dressed as a “man-about-town” and is sporting a spectacular handlebar mustache. Those at the exact two things Casper spent his birthday money on the day before. Lenny tries to get help and because of this he is named the “Evil One” and becomes most wanted while Casper’s (newly elected Mayor, Fako Mustacho) evil takeover plans unfold.
Fortunately for Lenny Junior it is Halloween so being in disguise is acceptable and by some twist of trolley car fate, Lenny meets the real live person he is dressed up as, Jodie O’Rodeo. She seems genuinely nice and both soon realize the future of Hairsprinkle, in fact the world, is in their hands. With only booger shooting nasal guns, electric shock gum and the ultra-sticky-stretchy grabber hand along with their wits they must work together to save the world. Can they stop Fako Mustacho before it is too late?
You’ll have to smile your way to the ending to find out. Really, who doesn’t love a good “slappy hand?”