School Library Journal (August 1, 2011)
K-Gr 2-Awesome Man can smash through the time barrier, shoot positronic rays out of his eyeballs, and combat mutant Jell-O from Beyond the Stars. "But don't think it's nonstop fun and photons being Awesome Man. Sometimes it can be pretty hard.." When a superhero feels tired and angry, he can always head for the Fortress of Awesome, where Mom is waiting with cheese and crackers and chocolate milk. Chabon's first picture book discharges delectable language like "several billion kilojoules per nanosecond," "Professor Von Evil in his Antimatter Slimebot," and "thermo vulcanized protein-delivery orb." Things are more likely to skloosh and skarunch than not. Verbiage like this nudges the story into read-aloud territory, and children will be swooping around the room as they listen. But if they stop long enough to peek at the pages, they'll enjoy the way Parker kicks it up another notch with hyperkinetic, hypercolored comic-book action scenes. The depiction of a showdown between Awesome Man and his nemesis-the Flaming Eyeball-is priceless. Readers may notice that there's a moral peeking out from Awesome Man's cape, but they'll still grab this story in their "ginormous Awesome Power Grip" and not let go.-Susan Weitz, formerly at Spencer-Van Etten School District, Spencer, NY (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.