children who use science, inventions, and experiments to solve mysteries.
Nick and Tesla find themselves in the middle of solving the crime of a stolen valuable comic book. Amidst their investigation, new robots keep popping up around town in all of the local businesses. This inspires Nick and Tesla to make some of their own robots, for which instructions are included in the book.
The mystery has plenty of twists, turns, and clues to keep the young reader interested. What role could a basketball made of bagels possibly play in solving crime? Wildly creative ideas fill the pages of the novel, leaving the reader thinking that truly anything could happen next.
Since I mentioned that Nick and Tesla are star role models for the creative mind, it's also worth noting that their need to solve mysteries causes them to overrides good judgment in dangerous situations. In Robot Army Rampage, the children face no consequence for making foolish decisions: "'Tez, no!' Nick called from the shadows. 'You're supposed to run away from dangerous criminals, not go toward them" (144).
This Nick and Tesla book was still a great read that I would recommend to elementary age children, though I would worry that they would be disappointed in the complexity of building a robot. I personally preferred the story and creations of Secret Agent Gadget Battle, but this book provides some framework for understanding the setting and the characters before continuing on in the series.
FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from Quirk Books for this review. The opinion in this review is unbiased and reflects my honest judgment of the product.