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Monday, October 25, 2010

Monkey Nuts Book 1: The Diamond Egg of Wonders

Originally serialised in the much-missed DFC comic back in 2008-09, Monkey Nuts is a light-hearted adventure yarn, the tone set from page one. In a monstrous, evil fortress called Tabitha we are introduced to something even more evil, Eric... no, sorry, Lord Terra, as he likes to be called now, his henchmen Burble and Goober, and the McGuffin of the story, The Diamond Egg of Wonders, located somewhere on the Isla de Monstera. By using a Monster Magnet, Eric... sorry, Lord Terra hopes to attract every loony and weirdo to the area while he steals the diamond.

Cut to Chump Town on the Isla de Monstera, home of Sid, a tap-dancing monkey in need of work, a coffee vending machine called Rivet and Chief Tuft, a talking coconut in charge of the island's Serious Crime Squad. When evil magician The Amazing Amazing is irresistibly attracted to the island and destroys police headquarters, it is left to Sid and Rivet to perform some magic of their own and defeat the trickster, convincing Chief Tuft that they should set up their own crime fighting unit, Monkey Nuts.

After a series of wacky battles against some equally bizarre villains (a pirate cowboy with a giant robot horse, a demented temple, the Great Escape Gang and others) our dynamic duo finally find themselves face to jowl with the mastermind behind all their problems.

Oddball enemies, countless mentions of bums or butts and the ceaseless banter between Sid and Rivet will keep any kid amused and entertained. But as endlessly inventive as the story is, the artwork is the immediate attention grabber. Rich in detail and colour, you'll want to go back again and again over every page to see what you missed the first and second time around. There's plenty here for adults who want to unleash their inner ten-year-old: it's pacy, it's funny and it deserves a place on your shelves.

Monkey Nuts Book 1: The Diamond Egg of Wonders by The Etherington Brothers. David Fickling Books ISBN 978-0385619066, 2 September 2010.

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