by Nikalas Catlow and Tim Wesson

Nosy Crow, $6.99, 94 pages

In Mega Mash-Up Robots vs. Gorillas in the Desert, gorillas and robots co-exist peacefully trading bananas and oil until there’s an argument. While settling their differences with a desert race, they run into unexpected obstacles.||Judging by word count, this quirky story is brief. But the Mega Mash-Up series isn’t just reading. This book was created graphic novel style with black, white and yellow illustrations splashed across each page. Or are they “almost illustrations”? Each page includes empty spots or half-finished illustrations waiting for the reader’s creative touches. Draw a giant pile of bananas, a mad face, or dials on a loony laser. These 10 to 20-page chapters are the perfect length for young readers but they will probably linger much longer, adding their imagination to the book.

Robots vs. Gorillas seems targeted to young boys but who knows? It’s perfect for comic book lovers, crazy/quirky lovers, and kids who love to draw. The authors don’t just let young illustrators flounder but include four pages of tips ranging from types of pens to use to suggestions for gorilla expressions to ideas for unusual textures. If you need to convince a young person that reading is FUN, this is the book!

Jodi M. Webb