Three kids look up in alarm while tentacles and arms grow beneath a taco restaurant in the background. Text: "By the New York Times Bestselling Author. Apocalypse Taco. Nathan Hale."

KidLit Book Review: Apocalypse Taco by Nathan Hale


Synopsis

Sid, Axl, and Ivan volunteer to make a late-night fast-food run for the high school theater crew, and when they return, they find themselves. Not in a deep, metaphoric sense: They find copies of themselves onstage. As they look closer, they begin to realize that the world around them isn’t quite right. Turns out, when they went to the taco place across town, they actually crossed into an alien dimension that’s eerily similar to their world. The aliens have made sinister copies of cars, buildings, and people — and they all want to get Sid, Axl, and Ivan. Now the group will have to use their wits, their truck, and even their windshield scraper to escape! But they may be too late. They may now be copies themselves…


Details

  • Title: Apocalypse Taco
  • Author/Illustrator: Nathan Hale
  • Cover Artist: Nathan Hale
  • Publisher: Amulet Books
  • ISBN: 1419733737
  • Publication Date: March 26, 2019
  • For Ages: 8-12
  • Category: Middle Grade
  • Spooky-Scary or Spooky-Fun? Spooky-Scary-Fun. 🎃 ☠️

I’d like to thank Amulet Books for providing an advance copy via Edelweiss+ in exchange for an honest review.


Review

If you like your humor absurdist, your science fiction mildly terrifying and mildly disgusting, and your nachos delivered by a bear wearing a sombrero, then friend, have I got the comic for you. Even if you don’t think you like any of those things, trust me…I’ve got the comic for you. Apocalypse Taco not only exceeded my expectations, it put my expectations into a telepod from Cronenberg’s The Fly, spliced them with a glittering unicorn puppy, and then exceeded THOSE super sparkly mutant expectations.

Strange things are afoot at the Taco Bear. When Axl, Ivan, and Sid go on a late-night snack run for their school theatre troupe, they go through the drive-through and quickly realize that they’re not in the same world that was on the other side of the staticky intercom and ursine sombrero enthusiast. They’ve stumbled into an alternate dimension, where they encounter carnivorous nachos, creatures made entirely out of teeth, and a grad student named Wendy with an indeterminate number of arms. I fear that I’ve said too much already, because this is a book that you need to experience for yourself, but I really want you to read this and I figured that killer nachos and tooth demons would be strong selling points.

This book is rated for a middle grade audience, which I think is a perfect age range. Obviously it will appeal to adults as well I am, arguably, an adult, and this book is my new obsession but it’s never too scary or gory for its intended audience. Young readers will love the ick factor, and Nathan Hale’s art finds a miraculous balance between mind-bending horror and kid-friendly comedy. (The copy I reviewed hadn’t even been colored yet, so I can’t imagine how good it’s going to look once I go buy myself the finished product.)

The entire book, in fact, is the perfect combination of creepy, weird, and hilarious. I’m seriously considering renting a hot air balloon to drop copies of this near (but not directly on top of) unsuspecting pedestrians to spread the word about this book. It really has everything. Do you like comedy? Read Apocalypse Taco. Ya dig sci-fi? Have some Apocalypse Taco. You a horror fan? Apocalypse Taco time, my friend. Are weird comics your jam? Then I suggest a little Apocalypse Taco.

Once you’ve read it and loved it, come back and let me know. And maybe help me out in my mission to spread the Apocalypse Taco gospel. I have a feeling that hot air balloon deposit is going to be pretty steep.


Rating

This book is my everything. I give it 5 out of 5 coffins.

5 Coffins


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