Wahoo Cray lives in a zoo. His father is an animal wrangler, so he's grown up with all manner of gators, snakes, parrots, rats, monkeys, snappers, and more in his backyard. The critters he can handle. His father is the unpredictable one.
When his dad takes a job with a reality TV show called "Expedition Survival!", Wahoo figures he'll have to do a bit of wrangling himself - to keep his dad from killing Derek Badger, the show's boneheaded star, before the shoot is over. But the job keeps getting more complicated. Derek Badger seems to actually believe his PR and insists on using wild animals for his stunts. And Wahoo's acquired a shadow named Tuna - a girl who's sporting a shiner courtesy of her old man and needs a place to hide out.
They've only been on location in the Everglades for a day before Derek gets bitten by a bat and goes missing in a storm. Search parties head out and promptly get lost themselves. And then Tuna's dad shows up with a gun.
It's anyone's guess who will actually survive "Expedition Survival".
©2012 Carl Hiaasen (P)2012 Listening Library
"Hiaasen's best for a young audience since Newbery Honor Hoot (2002) features a shy, deep-feeling protagonist who's also a pragmatist and plenty of nature info and age-appropriate cultural commentary.... Humorous adventure tales just don't get any more wacked...or fun to read than this." (Kirkus)
Engaging, funny, warm-hearted and well read. An attractive anecdote to all the endless gruesome serial killer thrillers knocking about.
My children (8 & 14 years) laughed their heads off when Derek Badger believes he has become a vampire.
The whole family laughed a lot. Beneath the humour, there are some difficult topics for especially younger child listeners, such a child-beating drunken father and a child who has to deal with his father's ill health. The children are the most inspiring characters in this and the author's other children's stories- they are funny, warm and brave and trying to think on their feet to deal with difficult circumstances.
I am unsure why some reviewers have struggled to understand the narrator, who has an appropriately american accent. My British children had no problem understanding his narration, so other native english-speakers should be fine. I really quite liked his low-key delivery.
Keen user of audiobooks
I've read and listened to Carl Hiaasen books for a couple of years now, after picking up one of his books from the library and falling in love with his wit and narrative. Although rated as a children's book, adult fans of the author''s other books will feel equally at home with "Chomp". The opening line alone makes it worth a read and the rest is pure Hiaasen, extremely well performed by James Van Der Beek.
The narrator was reading so quickly I couldn't understand one out of every 10 words he said. I love Carl Hiaasen but I tried to listen to this book for 1 hour, 30 min each time and had to turn it off. I am very disappointed and would never purchase another book read by this narrator.
Slow down, get rid of the monotone.
After several years of being with audible I have never been disappointed in a book. I wish I had my credit back.
"Great book for the entire family."
I loved the relationship between Wahoo and his family. Makes the whole book seem even better.
The characters were smart funny and likable. I was in the everglades in florida when i listened to this. I even tried to figure out if there was a stuffed alligator at the air boat tour I took my children on.
He is a great reader. He does a good job of making all of the characters come to life.
I wish the author would write more about this family. Bring back Tuna.
"a great engaging story"
My husband and three boys listened to this story in one hit on a long car journey. I was amazed at how it captivated the boys and drew them away from their own electronic devices. It is a very contemporary story, very relevant, funny, informative and entertaining. We all loved the reader. Made the trip very easy
One again, Carl Hiaasen puts a motley crew of characters in the middle of a Florida swamp and comes up with the best contemporary humor writing being done today. BRAVO!
"Never let Van Der Beek narrate..."
I love Carl Hiaasen and wait for each book to come out. Unless I buy the book to read I might not make it through this one. Van Der Beek reads so fast I feel like I am listening 3 words behind - not a good experience.
Can't tell how it compares - haven't been able to get past the first 5 minutes.
He's reading so fast I can't keep up and the characters all sound alike - no real variation.
Not so far.
Its so bad they should re-do it with someone else.
"True Carl Hiaasen"
No. Usually don't reread same book.
The wit and the good guys always finish first.
Very expressive, good tempo and inflections.
Oh, made me laugh.
Read as many Carl Hiaasen books as I can. Never disappointed.
"Light and amusing."
It's up there. I like listening to something fairly light so I can also keep my focus on the road, and this book fit the bill.
Probably Mickey was my favorite, but all the characters are so much fun.
It's not that type of book.
"Not up to Hiassen's standards!"
Hiassen definitely, Van Der Beek, not so much!
The reader was not up to the the book!
"Chomp is for kids, but fun for adults"
I guess I read most of Hiaasen's works for the mayhem that ensues. This one didn't quite have all the mayhem I like. True, crazy accidents did have their usual turn to more problems or hilarity, but not as much as I am used to reading in Hiaasen's books. I didn't hate it, nor did I love it.
"Chomp it up!"
We listened to this as a family with 10 and 8 y/o kids on a road trip to florida! This was the PERFECT book to listen to on the way to florida! Hiaasen knows so much about florida's natural fauna and animals, we learned a bunch about the everglades. The kid characters are strong, but not over the top. There are some tough issues, mainly a child character being physically abused by her father, but it is handled well. Also, very good narrator! We love Hoot by Hiaasen aswell!
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