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Batjack

Ratings:
Length: 133 pages1 hour

Summary

Through a series of quirky and humorous dilemmas Tom, SONNY – shoulders spindly as a wire coat hanger, ALICE – with more piercings that a sieve, and GRACE – nibbling at her fingernails till there are only tiny slivers left, deal with their bullies, Dylan and THE LAGER LOUTS, without having to rely on adults.
This book moves from audition to opening night of a musical spoof called BATJACK. Nerdy TOM plucks up the courage to audition for the lead. But so too does his arch enemy, the bully DYLAN. Both boys (13 years old) fantasise about having EMMA as their leading lady.
“You’ll pay for this,” swears Dylan when Tom is cast as Batjack and Dylan as his understudy. And so the battle begins – physical fights, vandalism, theft... You name it – Dylan does it.
Through a series of quirky and humorous dilemmas Tom and his friends (SONNY – shoulders spindly as a wire coat hanger, ALICE – with more piercings that a sieve, and GRACE – nibbling at her fingernails till there are only tiny slivers left) come up with ways to deal with Dylan and THE LAGER LOUTS without having to rely on the intervention of teachers or parents.
Opening night draws closer. Tom (Batjack) and Emma (Robyn) master the art of flying in the Batrocket onto the set of Planet Zlurvon. They must retrieve the Diatrec Crystal which has been stolen from Zlurvon by The Riddler and his accomplice, twisted medicinal madwoman, Doctor Zatanna. Without energy from the Crystal all inhabitants will die in a matter of weeks. There is not a moment to lose. Batjack must swoop to the rescue.
MR BEATSON, the producer, becomes increasingly dishevelled and the outfits of MS NASH, the musical director, become more bizarre (...an iridescent pink top that doesn’t quite reach her trousers. A roll of fat squishes out the middle - like custard when you bite into a donut). A bus trip to a professional musical sets the standard – a pity Dylan and the Lager Louts are in the back seat.
Tom stumbles across Dylan in a distressed state. Dylan’s dog (CHEETAH) is sick. This brings back memories of when Tom’s own dog (COCO) died. A precarious truce is forged while Tom helps Dylan get the sick dog home. When Cheetah dies, Tom feels compelled to help Dylan with the burial. Through this, the reason for Dylan’s bullying becomes apparent (a car accident has left Dylan’s mother incapacitated). Tom resolves to give Dylan another chance much to the horror of his friends.
Then it is Lights, Camera, Action.
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