Nick and Tesla’s Solar-Powered Showdown: A Mystery with Sun-Powered Gadgets You Can Build Yourself

I’m sure by now you know how much love I have for the Nick and Tesla series right? Nick and Tesla’s Solar-Powered Showdown: A Mystery with Sun-Powered Gadgets You Can Build Yourself is the latest in the series!


Here’s a synopsis:

uper-smart kid inventors Nick and Tesla Holt have outsmarted crooks, spies, and kidnappers, but now it’s time to crack their biggest mystery yet: where the heck are their parents? With the help of their eccentric Uncle Newt, the twins trace the clues to their missing Mom and Dad, scientists working on solar-power research for a clandestine government project. They’ll need all their wits, along with an assortment of homemade gadgets, to outsmart the criminal mastermind who’s trying to turn solar power into a secret weapon. Featuring instructions for building and using five awesome solar-powered contraptions—a hot dog cooker, alarm bell, listening device, model car, and nighttime LED signal cannon

Twins Nikola Copernicus Holt and his sister Tesla Nightingale Holt have been on so many fun adventures I can’t wait to see kind of fun they get into next. This time, their parents are missing, woooot!! But you know what I love most of all about this series? Science projects every few chapters. So you’ll never be at a loss for something to do or for that dreaded science fair.



Books Children

NatGeoKids Real or Fake? by Emily Krieger

NatGeoKids Real or Fake?

Real or Fake

Far-out fibs, fishy facts, and phony photos to test for the truth


Here’s a fun book from National Geographic KiDS that kid will LOVE. Like all NGK books, Real or Fake contains great color photos with fun facts and wild interesting information that you might not learn about otherwise.  Here’s an example: An octopus that lives in trees in the US Pacific Northwest. Real or Fake?  The answer? Fake! Why? Because just like Bigfoot, it’s a made up thing. How about Chester the chimp who can play a guitar specially designed for him. The answer? Fake! As funny as it sounds, chimps can do many things but they sadly, cannot learn to play and sing because they don’t have the fine motor skills that humans have. But how funny would that be?

Is there really a place called Humpty Doo, Australia? Yes. What about Batman, Turkey? Yes. Cheeseburger, Wisconsin? Fake. What about Firenadoes? Is that a thing?

You’ll hafta Google it to find out.  In the meantime, grab several copies of this book because when you bring this book home everyone’s going to want to read it!

Did you know you can get a job as a pet food taster?




Books Diversity Reading Challenge

CYBILS Finalist: The Six by Mark Alpert

I’ll admit I had real trouble with The Six by Mark Alpert.  I thought the book was going to be like a younger Ready Player One sorta kinda.

The Six by Mark Alpert


Unfortunately, when I got into the book, I found I didn’t enjoy it very much. The government and the military are performing experiments on teens who are fatal illnesses. The kids will use their brains to become robots. And these robots will help defeat the Soviets.  It’s all very artificial intelligence and war gamesy, which, if you’re into, then you will love.

The bit that I absolutely loved about the book is that the main character has muscular dystrophy. I’ve never read anything about muscular dystrophy so I had an opportunity to research the disease which made for a nice side project. The brain still works but the body is unable to cooperate and most patients become unable to walk, feed, or care for themselves.

If you like robots then this is the book for you. There are so many robots and artificial intelligence  geekery that you will cheer for flying drones and zooming bombs.  Let your geek flag fly high!

Due to the main character’s muscular dystrophy, The Six is a great title for the Diversity Reading Challenge under physical disability. It’s a fast read.

Geeks unite!

Holiday Gift Guide Lists

Holiday Shopping Made Easy: books for your little scientist

Looking for something for your future Tesla, Einstein, or Madame Curie? Check these out:

Scientists Collage

Put a little science under the tree this year.



Books Children

Fun in the Kitchen with Edible Science (Nat Geo Kids)

Do you have a budding scientist in your house? Well if you’re like me, you love food, but did you know that cooking is a form of science?

Also, what did you think of Brain Games? Pretty interesting, right?

Don’t you love the brain?

Both books are perfect for homeschoolers!


The Fourteenth Goldfish by Jennifer Holm



I love love love The Fourteenth Goldfish by Jennifer Holm.  It’s your quietly get you to believe in the impossible gateway book! Our heroine has a quirky family. Who doesn’t? She has a goldfish that’s lived for 10 years.

What’s that you say? You‘re goldfish only lived for a month? Mine too!

Not only does Ellie think she has the longest living goldfish, but her curmudgeonly grandfather comes to stay with them. And somehow he’s only 13.  How does that work?

Well, it seems as if her grandfather, a famous scientist, has discovered the cure for aging!

You’ve got to read this book. I laughed the entire time.

Perfect end of summer quick read.

Believe in the possible!


The Upshot: Summer Vacation Reading for Tweens

Books Children

Nick and Tesla’s Secret Agent Gadget Battle!

I LOVE the Nick and Tesla series!


If you love ALL things science, then you’ll love the next installment: Nick and Tesla’s Secret Agent Gadget Battle! As we follow twins Nick and Tesla around Half Moon Bay, their lovable weird Uncle Newt constantly gets them into trouble. Uncle Newt is under surveillance (but who?? and why??) and it’s up to the twins to figure out why!

Along they way you’ll learn how to make all kinds of neat science experiments (WARNING: wear protective clothing and eyewear, I’m just saying) just like the kids do in the series.

Remember the science experiment I made trying to follow their recipe in High Voltage Danger Lab?  Here’s the link.

Quirk Books always brings the BEST stuff!

Grab your copy now, put on your white lab coat and get experimenting. OR, put on sunglasses and a fake mustache and try your hand at going undercover.



Nick and Tesla’s High-Voltage Danger Lab

Inspired by Nick and Tesla’s High Voltage Danger Lab, I decided to conduct an experiment.  Nick and Tesla are twins and also amateur scientists.  As an amateur scientist myself, I was highly intrigued to read the book and follow along with the supplemental science experiments provided in the chapters.  What a fun way to read and get your science geek on!

Here’s my video review.  Hint, hold your noses.


I cannot express enough how much I love this book! Extra high fives for multicultural characters with a menacing little sister with cornrows who terrorizes her older brother.  Gotta love that!

Four paws for being blinded by science.

Unconventional Librarian 4paws


Any science geeks out there? Did you celebrate Mole Day last month?