Jack’s hidden stash of old comic books is his only refuge from endless chores and bullying at the orphanage where he was abandoned as a baby 12 years ago. Captain Courage! Laser Girl! Evil circle-eyed Robo-Zombies who turn their victims into Robo-Zombies!
While bailing water from the orphanage’s basement, Jack hears strange noises from its sunken stairway. Suddenly a Robo-Zombie appears, aiming its rocket-cannon arm at him! Jack flees into the surrounding swamp, but can’t escape from the Robo-Zombie. Backed up against the generator shed, Jack wishes once again that he had superpowers and is shocked when he can make the generator blast his attacker.
Of course, no one at the orphanage believes Jack was attacked, instead blaming him for blowing up the generator. But the special agent who comes to question Jack about the Robo-Zombie is convinced and takes him away so he can report directly… to the Imagine Nation, where those with superpowers really do live!
Jack meets his comic book heroes there, as well as other legendary beings. Even though the agent tells Jack that this is his birthplace, the Imagine Nation’s borders are closed to outsiders because of Robo-Zombie attacks years before. When RZ nanites are detected in Jack’s blood, he’s suddenly on the run in this strange world. But why haven’t the RZ circles appeared around Jack’s eyes yet? Why is he still flesh and blood instead of cables and circuits?
Can Jack discover his superpower and learn to control it? Will he be the salvation of the Imagine Nation or its destruction? His new friends stand ready to help him prove his innocence, but superscientist Jonas Smart is ready to dissect Jack, just to make sure… 480 pages Ages 9-13
Recommended by: Katy Manck, Librarian-at-Large (retired academic/corporate/school librarian), Gilmer, Texas, USA
“Home?” Jack asked. “You know where I’m from?” “I’m pretty sure I do.” “I thought I was born here in Jersey.” Jazen shook his head. “There’s only one place in the world where power like yours comes from.I’m taking you to the Imagine nation. Let me guess, you’ve never heard of it.”
Twelve-year old Jack will have a bleak future at St. Barnaby’s Home for the Hopeless, Abandoned, Forgotten, and Lost.Until one morning a Robo-Zombie rises up out of the swaps surrounding the school and tries to kill Jack.After jack gets the upper hand, he is removed from the orphanage and taken to the Imagine Nation, a place where super heroes are real and the technology is beyond your wildest dreams.
Unfortunately, Jack is welcomed since it appears he is infected by a virus that will surely cause his death and bring destruction to his new home.Luckily for him, the Circle Men who rule the Imagine Nation see super hero potential in him and he becomes a candidate for the School of Thought, a superhero training school.But will Jack’s true identity catch up with him and cause a war in the Imagine Nation, or is Jack really hero material after all.Despite its size (470 pages), this is a fast-paced adventure about an unlikely hero who doesn’t even know who he is, yet with some guidance, can learn to believe in himself and maybe just save a world.
Recommended by Alice Cyphers, Librarian, Pennsylvania, USA