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

Written by Bob Pflugfelder and Steve Hockensmith
Illustrated by Scott Garrett

With a better-than-MacGyver talent, Nick and Tesla build gadgets that get them into and out of trouble with regularity. In this newest installment in the series, the twins face evil mastermind Bob and his group of flunkies, including two ninja-style grannies. The parents of twelve-year-old Nikola Copernicus and Tesla Nightingale Holt have been kidnapped, and they’re staying with their absentminded Uncle Newt. Government agents have told the kids nothing other than lies about their parents. So they set out to find out what’s really going on. Along the way, they build Uncle Newt’s Guaranteed-Not-to-Explode Frankfurter Heater-Upper, which they use to accidentally fry the pendants meant to keep track of them; Nick and Tesla and Uncle Newt’s Ping-Pong Ball Signal Cannon; Tesla’s (and Nick and Uncle Newt’s but mostly Tesla’s) Solar Spy Birdhouse; and Nick and Tesla’s Solar-Powered Long-Range Rover. Bob wants to use the Holts’ research into solar power to kill the President and take over the world, but the kids have other plans.

The gadgets in the book require adult supervision and some special equipment, so it’s best to read this with a teacher or parent. But the directions and diagrams are explicit and easy to follow. Kids and adults will learn a lot.

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  • Nick and TeslaTitle: Nick and Tesla’s Solar-Powered Showdown: A Mystery with Sun-Powered Gadgets You Can Build Yourself
  • Author: Bob Pflugfelder and Steve Hockensmith
  • Illustrator: by Scott Garrett
  • Published: Quirk Productions, May 10, 2016
  • Reviewer: Sue Poduska
  • Format: Hardcover, 264 pages
  • Grade Level: 4 to 7
  • Genre: Fiction, science, humor
  • ISBN: 978-1-59474-866-0

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