Friday, October 22, 2021

It was a dark and zombie night...

Return of ZomBert (The Zombert Chronicles) 
by Kara LaReau; illustrated by Ryan Andrews 
160 pages; ages 8-12
‎ Candlewick, 2021

This is the perfect time of year to settle in for a Halloween read. The wind is blowing through the trees, and limbs are squeaking and scratching against the house. Something, somewhere is moaning, and … what’s that tap-tap-tapping noise at the window? Pull up the quilt, grab your mug of cocoa, and lean in for the continuing tale of … ZomBert.

In a certain corporate headquarters on the edge of town, all was quiet. 

Plans are being hatched. Evil plans. Plans to kidnap a certain cat who, though once stray and straggly, now spends his days dozing in Mellie’s room. Now Mellie has to earn money to pay back her parents for vet care and the cat’s other adoption-related expenses. But Mellie is reluctant to take on yard work for Mrs. Witt, known to some as “the Candy Witch”.

Turns out Mrs. Witt has lots of old science stuff from back when she and her husband owned a confectionary shop, back before YummCo bought the company and changed the recipes. Now, YummCo is so large they influence the town – and their newest event is a harvest festival with a pet contest and parade. 

Then people start acting weird – they can’t seem to get enough of YummCo foods, and they act like … zombies?  Mellie and her friends – and ZomBert the cat – are determined to uncover the mystery. Things don’t go as planned, people end up in the wrong place, and cats go missing.

It's a fun story to read. But like YummCo products, this book seems a bit light on the nutrition and destined to get you hooked so you’ll read the next book. Plus this reader wants to know: why didn't Millie follow the clue?

Thanks for dropping by today. On Monday we'll be hanging out at Marvelous Middle Grade Monday with other  bloggers. It's over at Greg Pattridge's blog, Always in the Middle, so hop over to see what other people are reading. Review copy provided by the publisher.


  1. This sounds like a great Halloween mystery. What fun for readers! Great choice today!

  2. Sounds like it would go well with THE HALLOWEEN MOON that I reviewed today. Thanks for featuring on MMGM. I'm going to track down a copy.

  3. This sounds like such a fun read, and I keep hearing great things about it! I'm sorry it felt a little like setup for the next book, but the plot definitely sounds engaging. Thanks so much for the great review!

  4. "like YummCo products, this book seems a bit light on the nutrition"--funny! Sound enjoyable if not amazing.

  5. This sounds cute, maybe for younger middle-graders. Thanks for telling me about it.