The Exploding Wizard’s Right-Hand Boy (Trevor Blake Adventure #1)

| May 13, 2014

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The Exploding Wizard's Right-Hand Boy (Trevor Blake Adventure #1)

Early one Saturday morning, ten-year-old Trevor Blake gets up before his mom and dad to search the backyard for his missing dog, Scruffy. Sadly, there’s no little brown doggie waiting for him on the doormat–just a disembodied hand digging a hole in the flower bed.

A dejected Trevor goes over there to watch it dig.

The hand unearths a rubber squeak toy shaped like a dog bone–probably buried by Scruffy before he left home for inexplicable reasons of his own. Trevor (ever the intellectually curious boy) interrogates the hand (one squeak for yes, etc.) and–to his astonishment and delight–discovers it KNOWS where his dog is.

Well, maybe…

Let’s face it: The hand is more than a little goofy.

There’s a good reason for that. The hand belongs to the Exploding Wizard of West Altadena–a serious source of goofiness in this twisted, alternate history version of Los Angeles in the 1950s.

Trevor’s world is full of energetic wizards: They cavort in front of the Brown Derby Restaurant; they joyride down Hollywood Boulevard in big black Cadillac convertibles, their tall pointy wizard hats blown back in the slipstream like wind socks at the airport.

One enthusiastic gaggle of wizards is gleefully waging war on the Exploding Wizard. They’re the guys responsible for tricking the clueless fellow into blowing himself up–over and over.

And it’s happened again!

This time, the event even makes the morning newspaper–the one with the confounding headline: RUSSIAN WIZARDS LAUNCH SPUTNIK!

Now BOTH the Wizard’s hands are hiding out in Trevor’s bedroom, expertly demonstrating the proper way to work a paddle-ball game. (This frustrating, forehead-bonking device was Trevor’s finder’s fee for locating the FIRST hand, a week ago.) Oddly, the rubber ball at the end of the elastic tether is painted to look like an eyeball–one that matches the Wizard’s own blue eyes.

Trevor dodges inquiries from his mom and dad, and heads on down to the boulevard to catch a streetcar for West Altadena. He’s got the Wizard’s hands in a shoe box, along with the rubber bone squeak toy, the ill-conceived paddle-ball game, and–in case the hands get a mite peckish–a jar of his mom’s best hand cream (chock-full of nutrients, the label says). He’s hopeful the Wizard will figure out what his wayward hands know about Trevor’s missing dog–once the erratic fellow gets them reattached.

The journey to West Altadena evolves into Trevor’s own personal and increasingly bizarre odyssey–fraught with supernatural interlopers and magic-based obstacles.

THE EXPLODING WIZARD’S RIGHT-HAND BOY is a middle-grade chapter book of 23k words. Suitable for whimsy-loving adults, too. First in a series.

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