Sonderbooks Book Reviews by Sondra Eklund

Sonderbooks Stand-out 2004
Buy from

Rate this Book

Sonderbooks 76
    Previous Book
    Next Book

Young Adult Fiction
Children's Nonfiction
Children's Fiction
        Previous Book
        Next Book

Picture Books

2004 Stand-outs
    Previous Book
    Next Book

2003 Stand-outs
2002 Stand-outs
2001 Stand-outs

Five-Star Books
Four-Star Books
Old Favorites
Back Issues
List of Reviews by Title
List of Reviews by Author

Why Read?
Children and Books
Links For Book Lovers
Book Discussion Forum

About Me
Contact Me
Make a Donation

I don't review books I don't like!

*****= An all-time favorite
****  = Outstanding
***    = Above average
**      = Enjoyable
*        = Good, with reservations


***The Big Kerplop!

by Bertrand R. Brinley

Reviewed April 20, 2004.
Purple House Press, Texas, 2003.  Originally published in 1974.  238 pages.
Available at Sembach Library (JF BRI).
Sonderbooks Stand-out 2004, #3, Young Adult and Children's Classics

I was delighted to discover a book about The Mad Scientists’ Club that I’d never seen when I was a kid.  Although it was written after The Mad Scientists’ Club, it tells about how the club began in the first place.  The Mad Scientists’ Club and The New Adventures of the Mad Scientists’ Club are both collections of short stories, but this book is a full-length novel, and I liked that approach for a change.

Charlie the narrator (We learn his last name in this book!  But I promised not to tell what it was.), Jeff Crocker and Harmon Muldoon were out on Strawberry Lake fishing one day, when the local Air Force base decided to run a drill out over the lake.  One of the planes seems to be in trouble.  The boys hear a big kerplop.  They take the time to get an idea of where the object fell.  When they get back to town, they learn that the plane inadvertently dropped an atomic device.

The boys try to tell officials that they know where the bomb was dropped, but no one listens to a bunch of kids.  They enlist the aid of genius Henry Mulligan, and together with some new club members, they sneak onto the lake at night and determine the precise location.  In the end, the Air Force needs Henry’s help to be able to recover the bomb safely.

It’s always fun to read about smart kids kerflummoxing self-important adults.  This book is good, clean, old-fashioned fun, with some interesting science thrown in along the way.

Reviews of other books by Bertrand R. Brinley:
The Mad Scientists' Club
The New Adventures of the Mad Scientists' Club

Copyright © 2005 Sondra Eklund.  All rights reserved.

-top of page-