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The Astounding Broccoli Boy

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  783 ratings  ·  145 reviews
"Find out why it's not easy being green in the hilarious book from master storyteller Frank Cottrell Boyce, The Astounding Broccoli Boy. Read by Ewan Goddard and with an approximate running time of 466 minutes it's time to meet a brand new super hero!

Rory Rooney likes to be prepared for all eventualities. His favourite book is Don't Be Scared, Be Prepared, and he has
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published September 8th 2015 by Walden Pond Press (first published January 1st 2015)
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Average rating 3.81  · 
Rating details
 ·  783 ratings  ·  145 reviews

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Jan 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kids, read-2016
**Interview with my 5 and 7 year old kids**

Me: What did you think of this book?
5: Every single bit - awesome.
7: Same what Molly said.

Me: Who was your favourite character and why?
7: I liked the bully guy because he was big and tough.
5: I like the girl that have a green face.

Me: What was your favourite bit?
5: When they hid the penguin in their room.
7: I liked the bit when they thought the gorilla was a big hairy person locked in a cage but it was really a gorilla.

Me: If your skin changed colour,
Barb Middleton
Jan 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Don your cape and soar into this smart, well-written book that parodies and deconstructs the superhero trope. While some will think it a blast to read, others will want it Gamma Bombed. It's silly, cartoonish, and a bit like watching the "Laurel and Hardy" TV show - two people acting stupid over and over and over again - only these two are fifth graders, Rory Rooney and his nemesis, Grim (aka Tommy-Lee). But beneath the humor are layers of deeper themes as Rory learns to deal with bullying, ...more
Apr 12, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gided-reading
i really liked how Rorry and Tommy became friends because at the start Tommy was a bully to Rorry and at the end they are really good friends i think Kokow Kwock was very bossy and i really liked Peter i would read it again and i think a lot of peolpe should read it i love when they get trapped in the frezzer
Aug 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
At first it is a bit boring but then it gets in action awesome author great job
Ms. Yingling
Jun 01, 2015 rated it liked it
ARC from Young Adult Books Central and reviewed there

Rory is bullied by a boy named Grim Komissky, who steals his lunch even though Rory's sister puts super hot sauce on his ham sandwiches. When Grim scarfs down a Wagon Wheel biscuit, he has an allergic reaction and ends up in the hospital. After falling into the water on a class outing, Rory turns bright green, and ends up in the hospital as well, in an isolation unit. There is a cat fever running rampant in London, and everyone is worried
Already a huge fan of Frank Cottrell Boyce, this is his latest one and although the title might not sound immediately engaging, the story is. It tells the story of Rory Rooney, a young teen who is an outside in his school. On a school trip, he is made to feel even more isolated when he suddenly finds himself having turned green. Worse, Tommy-Lee, the boy who has relentlessly been bullying since he started school also turns green and Rory finds himself stuck in the same ward with the one person ...more
May 16, 2016 rated it liked it
A cute, British version of the popular "ordinary kids become maybe kind of super heroes" story. There's some pretty funny writing, and I ADORE all the penguin scenes, but overall it read a little young and juvenile for my tastes. Great for upper elementary students.
It is a really good book that mixes realism and fantasy really well. It does get confusing at some points in the book but gets explained after. I would recommend this book for people that likes funny books that have a sense of realism in them.
Jun 01, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
This book, for all its supposed adventures, is actually quite boring. The protagonist turns green and walks the streets at night. That's it. Far from outstanding, it was rather disappointing.
Pippa Wilson
Jul 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Killer Kittens, A Wagon Wheel and Superheroes.

It’s finally out! As a big Frank Cottrell Boyce fan, I’ve been bursting with excitement to get my hands on The Astounding Broccoli Boy, and wondered what the multi-award winning author of Cosmic, Millions and The Unforgotten Coat could possibly have in store for us this time.
So, did it live up to my expectations?

Well ok, I’m biased, but I’m pleased to say that once again The Master of comedy has created a fresh, hugely funny, and heartwarming story
Miss Dickson
Aug 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
The Astounding Broccoli Boy was such a great story. Filled with lots of superhero adventure. I really liked how to traditional friend/foe problem was solved by the hero and the antihero becoming friends after so many misadventures together. There was a major editing mistake in my version of the text, where Tommy Lee is referred to being in the Prime Ministers house when he is actually on top of the city on a crane! The ending wash`t as exciting as I had hoped but overall, a very enjoyable read! ...more
Matt Woods
Jan 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: betterment-2017
I really enjoyed the story for several reasons, mainly due to the innovative idea of bringing the problematic issue of bullying, and showing that even in a situation where one is bullying another for no other reason than to be popular, when you see that person for who they are; they realise actually they are a really good person and a friendship can be formed. Not only does Cottrell Boyce capture a focus upon bullying it is also about diversity and race as well. I would definitely read this to ...more
Jan 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kidlit
Country: United Kingdom

An unconventional superhero book about three middle school-age kids who turn completely green, suddenly and inexplicably. I enjoyed the diverse cast of characters, the clean yet kid-friendly sense of humor, and the London setting. Plus - Killer Kittens! Zoo animal escape! This one is perfect for 8 and 9 year-olds reading above grade level, as well as 4th-6th graders. Highly recommend.
Sep 22, 2015 rated it liked it
I think the real message of this book is that we are all Super in some way. It is a wild and crazy romp with two, then three children who have turned green, as green as broccoli. I would not recommend it as a way to deal with bullies. While the bullying problem does get solved, it doesn't get solved in a way that could be duplicated. I like the fact that the puny guy ends up strong and the big guy is revealed as scared. Fun, funny and astounding adventures. A real page turner.
Fleur Hitchcock
It's now a couple of weeks since I read this, and I'm revising my opinion. I like it more than I did at the time. It has the usual wit and energy, although the plot is less obvious perhaps than in his other books. A fast read.
Aug 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: joel
I thought it was AWSOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Apr 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
It wasn't amazing... it was astounding!
Apr 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: heather
I personally recommend it to everyone.
Aug 27, 2015 added it
Cindy Hudson
May 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
When Rory Rooney’s skin turns green on a field trip he lands in the isolation ward of a hospital in London, where the doctor wants to test and observe him to see if he’s contagious. Rory is shocked to see that the only other person in the ward is Tommy-Lee, his long-time bully. But once Rory realizes that Tommy-Lee can sleepwalk past the locked doors, he discovers his own explanation for the reason the two of them have changed skin tone: they are now superheroes, able to teleport, map out the ...more
I swear, where has this author been my whole life?! I just recently discovered Boyce’s writing when I read Cosmic, and The Astounding Broccoli Boy is another homerun of an absurd middle-grade adventure story. The author does a great job of creating relatable but interesting characters. The situations in which the characters find themselves are absolutely ridiculous–totally the realm of tall tales–yet with enough Truth (the kind that impacts people, not necessarily the kind that is scientifically ...more
University of Chester teacher readers
This one is great fun. Rory suddenly, unexplicably turns green, and green people are often superheroes aren't they? It deals with a variety of issues in an amusing way. Not only does Rory turn green, but so does his nemesis Grim Komissky ... and part way through they are joind by the female superhero Koko Kwok. Grim, the school bully is not the person he appears to be, and we are all astounding in our own way. The children are held in an isolation ward (from which they escape at night to have ...more
Terry Maguire
Apr 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book is such a fun read!! I loved the characters and the premise - two characters turning green- Rory (year 7) & Tommy Lee (also year 7 & a total bully to Rory) who then have to spend a lot of time together- really works. Rory is always seeing his life in terms of comic books & his voice is convincingly that of a middle-school aged kid. Both boys change a lot during the course of their "greenness" and shared adventures. They learn to see each other anew by the novel's end. Any ...more
Claudia  -
Feb 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Life’s not fair for Rory Rooney. Small and unremarkable, a target for bullies, all he wants is to be left in peace at school and not to be thrown out of the bus and having his lunch stolen by his tormentors.
Then, for no reason he can think of, he turns a bright green and is stuck in hospital with his arch-nemesis, the bully Grim Komissky.
Can things get any worse?
The story starts with a “Wimpy Kid” scenario but then revs up and turns into an exciting and a bit bonkers superhero adventure. It’s
Stephen Connor
Silliness abound, albeit with a serious message.

Rory Rooney is not the most popular boy in his class, and becomes even less so when he turns inexplicably and unexplainably green.

Taken into quarantine for testing, Rory soon finds that his nemesis - bully Grim - has the same condition, and the two of them are stuck with one another.

Against the backdrop of a pandemic, a panicked London suspects the boys of being aliens, and they have to go a long way to prove they are not.

The message within is
Jun 18, 2019 rated it it was ok
I know I hate the Nonsense Genre, so the minute this book went off the rails I just should have quit. Fantasy is awesome, but plots where weird, random events keep coming and no one reacts like a normal human is much different. I was down with a kid turning green (especially after a fall in the Thames), but the rest of this ridiculous story was just awful for me. The penguins? Why were there penguins? I kept reading in the hope that there would be a satisfying conclusion that tied it all ...more
Apr 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: middle-grade
My Review: I bought this book on a complete whim, I needed an extra couple of dollars to qualify for free shipping and this book popped out at me. It was an oddly entertaining book to read and I think young readers would really be entertained by the antics of the characters. I was thoroughly entertained by the random and coincidental events that take place. I love the story works in a great message about differences and how friendships can be made and about bullies and understanding. It was a ...more
Robin Stevens
Feb 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A really funny, delightfully weird story about a boy who suddenly turns green. Rory is sure he's a superhero now ... but can he use his powers for good? (8+)

*Please note: this review is meant as a recommendation only. If you use it in any marketing material, online or anywhere on a published book without asking permission from me first, I will ask you to remove that use immediately. Thank you!*
Sarah Atherton
Sep 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
I think this book would be enjoyed by children around age 8-10. It is a fun read- starts a bit slow but the pacing picks up. Has some nice positive messages in there as well about how everyone is extraordinary in their own way.
Nov 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This was one of my favorite light-hearted but still meaningful reads in a long time!!! This book is a touching and relatable story, a page-turner, and a book that fills you with just a little more compassion and hope. It would be fun to read with my kids.
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Frank Cottrell Boyce is a British screenwriter, novelist and occasional actor.

In addition to original scripts, Cottrell Boyce has also adapted novels for the screen and written children's fiction, winning the 2004 Carnegie Medal for his debut, Millions, based on his own screenplay for the film of the same name.
His novel Framed was shortlisted for the Whitbread Book of the Year as well as the
“The thing that makes you different from everyone else--that's your superpower” 0 likes
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