for Rex Zero and the End of the World by Tim Wynne-Jones
At almost eleven, Rex has moved from Vancouver to Ottawa, can’t speak French—required in his new school—and has no friends. Until he meets Buster and James. When he introduces himself—Rex Norton-Norton—and explains the hyphen, Buster states, “Like a minus sign.” Norton minus Nor ton equals zero: Rex Zero—the best nickname in the universe (44). The historical setting, replete with the language, food, “modern” conveniences, and icons of the 1960s will be unfamiliar to most readers, and the Cold War images will need explanation. But this small slice of the good ol’ days proves to be an engaging mystery-adventure for reading alone or aloud. 2008 USBBY Outstanding International Books List, ALA Notable Children’s Books, Boston Book Review–Winner, Bank Street Best Children’s Book of the Year, CCBC Choice. lmp
Originally published by Groundwood Books Canada, in 2006.
Why does everyone seem so scared? That's what the new boy in town, Rex Norton-Norton, aka Rex Zero, wonders as he rides his bike through Ottawa's streets. Is it spies? Kidnappers? Or is it because of the shadowy creature some say is stalking Adams Park? One thing is certain in this summer of 1962 as the Cold War heats up: nothing is quite what it seems. What's a boy to do? If his name is Rex Zero and he has a bike he calls "Diablo," five wild and funny siblings, an alpha dog named Kincho, a basement bomb shelter built of old Punch magazines, and a mind that turns everything inside out, he's bound to come up with an amazing idea.
With its mystery, adventure, laugh-out-loud scenes of family chaos, and underlying message of hope, this wonderfully original novel explores the impact of doomsday on the imagination of one smart and funny twelve-year-old boy. And more Rex Zero adventures are promised!
Rex Zero and the End of the World is a 2008 Bank Street - Best Children's Book of the Year.