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3.41  ·  Rating Details ·  94 Ratings  ·  30 Reviews
What’s it like growing up in a town founded by inventors? On Saturdays, the adults open the doors of the Invent-o-Drome and give local children free rein to create whatever gadgets they can think up. Hypno-Goggles, a Rocket Chair, a homeworkeating robo-dog – the can-do kids of Marveltown are never at a loss for ideas. But when an unfortunate short circuit causes a group of ...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published September 30th 2008 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
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(showing 1-30)
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Ally Copper
If you are looking for a picture book that will stimulate young readers' imaginations, then "Marveltown" by Bruce McCall is the right book for you. It would be best for older elementary students (3rd through 5th grade). The futuristic illustrations in this book are a little intimidating at first. The futuristic contraptions depicted are so big, and the people are so small, it's quite different from most picture books that usually focus on the characters, making them seem big. This book focuses o ...more
When I plucked this big sunny square off the Professional Review shelves at work and surveyed the faux- Fifties Futurist paintings, I flashed back to pulling old books on rocket science off my Dad's shelves when I was a kid. The illustrations in those books were so intriguing - immense curved structures with impossibly thin floors and spires, a few tiny humans scratched in to give them scale; cratered surfaces and craggy mountains; big control rooms full of oversized dials... but the books would ...more
Oct 08, 2008 Katie rated it did not like it
I like the superhero comic book style of the illustrations in this book and I think they would appeal to a lot of kids, boys in particular. The book is supposed to be a "tale of ingenuity and mayhem", but I found it depressing. Marveltown is a futuristic place filled with inventors, and although the author claims that the children "thought fun without a challenge was no fun at all", they are obsessed with the idea that faster is better, bigger is better. Maybe I missed something, or I'm just rea ...more
Lauren Stoolfire
Mar 12, 2013 Lauren Stoolfire rated it really liked it
This picture book tells the story of the child inventors of Marveltown that save the day from giant rogue robots. I love the retro style of the illustrations – it looks like it is straight out of a 1940s sci-fi movie or comic – but it is also combined with imaginative new fangled inventions. This story really empowers kids by justifying their ideas. At the end of the story, it asks “Who knew what big brainstorms were next?” So I think this would be an excellent question to ask the kids; what wou ...more
Oct 06, 2010 Cindy rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Cindy by:
Robots! And Science! This is all about how the kids of Marveltown, an awesomely inventive place, come to save the adults from their creations, robots gone awry, by using their own kid inventions, even a homework-eating dog. It's a great fantasy book to help kids picture themselves as creative and inventive and able to give value to their communities. I could practically see the wheels turning in my oldest child's head as he saw himself in the shoes of the young inventors in this story.
Jan 16, 2013 Romelle rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2013
A story in which kids are the inventors of this futuristic community. Young readers will be inspired by the clever inventions to Imagine and create. The story dragged a little since the conflict did not start until the latter half of the book. The robots short circuited and caused havoc in Marveltown, threatening the kids' inventions. A bit predictable and slow paced, but I am sure this book will find its way to a home of a future inventor.
Jul 25, 2014 Karen rated it it was ok
My five-year-old son picked this out from the library this week. He wanted to check out yellow books, and this one definitely has a yellow cover.

In fact, the best thing about this book is that rather marvelous cover, and then the book went downhill from there. The more I read this book, the less I liked it.

Mar 22, 2012 Audrey rated it really liked it
The kids of Marveltown use their inventions to save the town from a group of crazed robots that were invented by adults.

This book is really fun to read, and the pictures are great. The book is full of imagination and leaves the reader wanting to know what other interesting things have been invented in Marveltown. The last page shows one of the inventions, but it does not say what it is.
Oct 22, 2008 Amanda rated it really liked it
I think kids will really enjoy looking at this book. There are fun ideas presented in the illustrations and it focuses on the lives of the kids and how the kids invent and help. Kinda gives a "Yo Gabba Gabba" feel.
Liza Gilbert
Aug 07, 2009 Liza Gilbert rated it did not like it
Shelves: picture-books
Yick. I was hopeful. It has a robot on the front and bright colors, usually surefire ingredients for capturing attention. Unfortunately, the text reads like a government pamphlet from the 1950s encouraging us to believe in technology.
Feb 08, 2009 Sydney rated it it was amazing
We got this book from the library this weekend and we might just have to add it to our collection. The illustrations are fantastic and I love the message of this book... that kids can use their imaginations to solve problems grown-ups can't!
Megan Marvel
The storyline comes out of nowhere. First it's just descriptions of the town/people/things they do, and then towards the very end there's a plot. Not well written.
Sep 27, 2012 Elaine rated it really liked it
Good storyline about the ups and downs of inventive technology, from the residents of Marveltown. The children also enjoyed the retro illustrations during preschool storytime.
Oct 15, 2012 Mary rated it liked it
Cool retro illustrations, but I'm not exactly sure who this book is for. Nostalgia seekers, perhaps?
Aug 31, 2009 Laura rated it liked it
Shelves: children
This appeals to the 5.5 year-old's inventing streak. The machines are cool and encourage inventive thinking. The plot leaves a bit to be desired, but it's a kid's book, so I'm forgiving....
Mrs Bond
Mar 12, 2009 Mrs Bond rated it liked it
Shelves: picturebook
Town where life revolves around inventing. When their giant robots attack, the children's inventions save the day.
Underwood Family
Jan 16, 2014 Underwood Family rated it really liked it
Shelves: with-the-boy
My son and I come back to this book again and again. He loves the fanciful nature of the inventions, and in the story the kids win the day which is fun for every kid!
Chris Callaway
Nov 08, 2008 Chris Callaway rated it really liked it
Fantastic artwork and an amusing story (featuring giant rampaging robots) makes this a great read for kids. The illustrations are inspired by 1950s era visions of the future.
Oct 15, 2008 Zack rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Not the greatest story, but a fun picture book. A great way to inspire creativity in little ones and it is refreshing to see a rather boy centered picture book!
Emily rated it really liked it
Jul 10, 2009
Margaret rated it did not like it
Feb 26, 2009
Brooke rated it liked it
Sep 26, 2012
Karen rated it liked it
Dec 03, 2012
Stephen rated it really liked it
Jul 26, 2012
Gabe rated it it was amazing
May 11, 2013
Lupine rated it liked it
Dec 04, 2008
Jean-Marie rated it liked it
Apr 21, 2012
Melanie Briend
Melanie Briend rated it liked it
Apr 22, 2013
Sarah rated it really liked it
Aug 12, 2013
Charlotte rated it really liked it
Aug 23, 2011
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Bruce McCall (born 1935) is a Canadian author and illustrator, best known for his frequent contributions to The New Yorker.

Born and raised in Simcoe, Ontario, Canada, he was fascinated by comic books and showed an early aptitude for drawing fantastical flying machines, blimps, bulbous-nosed muscle cars and futuristic dioramas.

In his memoir, Thin Ice Coming of Age in Canada, McCall admitted that he
More about Bruce McCall...

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