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My Rotten Life

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Ten-year-old Nathan Abercrombie is having a really bad day. First, Shawna Lanchester, the prettiest girl in his class, doesn't invite him to her party. Then he gets picked last in gym class. Things couldn't get any worse…until he gets doused with an experimental serum that turns him into a half-dead zombie! Nathan soon discovers that being half dead isn't all bad. He doesn' Ten-year-old Nathan Abercrombie is having a really bad day. First, Shawna Lanchester, the prettiest girl in his class, doesn't invite him to her party. Then he gets picked last in gym class. Things couldn't get any worse…until he gets doused with an experimental serum that turns him into a half-dead zombie! Nathan soon discovers that being half dead isn't all bad. He doesn't need any sleep, so he can stay up all night and play games online. He doesn't feel any pain, so there's no need to worry about Rodney the bully anymore. Still, Nathan would rather be human. Will he find a cure? Or will Nathan be half-dead forever? Fans of David Lubar's popular Weenies short story collections—which have sold more than one million copies—will love My Rotten Life, the first of a series of hilariously rotten adventures starring Nathan Abercrombie, Accidental Zombie.


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Ten-year-old Nathan Abercrombie is having a really bad day. First, Shawna Lanchester, the prettiest girl in his class, doesn't invite him to her party. Then he gets picked last in gym class. Things couldn't get any worse…until he gets doused with an experimental serum that turns him into a half-dead zombie! Nathan soon discovers that being half dead isn't all bad. He doesn' Ten-year-old Nathan Abercrombie is having a really bad day. First, Shawna Lanchester, the prettiest girl in his class, doesn't invite him to her party. Then he gets picked last in gym class. Things couldn't get any worse…until he gets doused with an experimental serum that turns him into a half-dead zombie! Nathan soon discovers that being half dead isn't all bad. He doesn't need any sleep, so he can stay up all night and play games online. He doesn't feel any pain, so there's no need to worry about Rodney the bully anymore. Still, Nathan would rather be human. Will he find a cure? Or will Nathan be half-dead forever? Fans of David Lubar's popular Weenies short story collections—which have sold more than one million copies—will love My Rotten Life, the first of a series of hilariously rotten adventures starring Nathan Abercrombie, Accidental Zombie.

30 review for My Rotten Life

  1. 5 out of 5

    Marlee

    My son, who is 10, found this book to be amazing. We read it together. He also found it quite funny. I found it started out really slowly. If my son hadn't been enjoying it, I wouldn't have finished it. However, though it was somewhat silly, I ended up enjoying the book as well. My son is excited to continue with the series. Easy to read with fun characters. My son, who is 10, found this book to be amazing. We read it together. He also found it quite funny. I found it started out really slowly. If my son hadn't been enjoying it, I wouldn't have finished it. However, though it was somewhat silly, I ended up enjoying the book as well. My son is excited to continue with the series. Easy to read with fun characters.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Cesar

    **Spoiler Alert** This is a cool book to read!Have you ever think how it would feel like to be dead and to not be able to feel any pain? Well this would be a great chance for you to read this book. This book is obviously fantasy because it has a type of supernatural in it. As you can see in the title it has the word zombie in it. I actually loved this book because there is one part that only the bravest people can do which is almost taking your life for a person. This book is about an ordinary **Spoiler Alert** This is a cool book to read!Have you ever think how it would feel like to be dead and to not be able to feel any pain? Well this would be a great chance for you to read this book. This book is obviously fantasy because it has a type of supernatural in it. As you can see in the title it has the word zombie in it. I actually loved this book because there is one part that only the bravest people can do which is almost taking your life for a person. This book is about an ordinary boy named Nathaniel Abercrombie who gets picked on in school, and his best friend named Mookie. Then one day Nathan (Nathaniel) was tired of his huts being hurt because this girl named Shawna told Nathan that she was having a Halloween part and that he wasn't invited, and she told him this just so that she can hurt Nathans feelings hurt. When I read this part I was like " really"? That was just so plain rude. So then this girl named Abigail told Nathan that her uncle is a scientist that made a formula that helps get rid of emotions. But something terrible happened when Abigail's uncle was going to give the Hurt-Be-Gone (the name of the formula that gets rid of emotions) Mookie thought that it was Kool-Aid and he rushed to get some cups but he bumped Abigail's uncle so he dropped the whole thing on Nathan. Then, Abigail's uncle gets arrested because of doing illegal experiments. The next few days Nathan started to have symptoms such as not needing to breath, not being able to eat and digest food, and being strong. he tells this to Abigail and Abigail tries to make an antidote for him, she needed scales from a rare tropical fish called the Lazarus mullet which lived in Bezimo island, a mushroom, and alexandrite (a rare gem that is the color purple). The problem was that Shawna had the gem in her bracelet so Nathan tries to think of a plant to steal that bracelet. Then, Shawna changes her and letting Nathan come to the party. When Nathan was in his room with Mookie he was searching for his board games but in his closet is was a mass of boxes in there so when Nathan tried to carry those boxes his finger came off which was pretty disgusting. When Nathan went to the party he tricked Shawna by putting his finger, when Shawna drank it she screamed and dropped the soda and her bracelet. I Immediately Nathan takes the bracelet and runs outside where Mookie and Abigail are waiting. Nathan notices he got the wrong bracelet and gets upset, Abigail admits to them that she lied about needing the mushroom because she wanted to spend time with both of them and also admits that the gem wasn't necessary because she just wanted to go to a party because she has never gone to one. She gives the antidote to Nathan which was a band aid that had the antidote on it. she told Nathan that he needs to keep it on and he sis not allow to take off the band aid because he would become a full zombie, when Mookie and Nathan are partying Abigail goes home to eat his mom's delicious chili , but when Nathan and Mookie were done partying they notice that Abigail's house was on fire. So Nathan tries to save her but he can't because of the fire so he took off the band aid and saves Abigail. By the time both of them came out Nathan became a full zombie and there is not any antidote for that. Abigail's house is burned down so the buy another one and all three of them became good friends. The setting is in October, around the 20th. In the story the location doesn't say. The exposition is that Nathan and Mookie are best friends and Nathan gets picked on, the rising action is when Abigail helps Nathan by taking him to her uncles lab to give him a formula so that he wouldn't have any emotions. The climax is that Abigail's uncle spills the whole thing on Nathan, the falling action is that all three of them (Abigail, Nathan, Mookie) try to get all the ingredients they need for the antidote, lastly, the resolution is when Abigail puts on the antidote on Nathan. The conflict is person vs. destiny/fate because Nathan tries to fight the formula for example they try to get all the ingredients for the antidote. Nathan is skinny a little tall, has brown hair, brown eyes, nice playful cool. Mookie is a little chubby, brown hair, blue eyes, wears glasses, he is playful and funny. Lastly, Abigail is short , has hazel eyes, brown hair, she is school smart, a bookworm, nice, and sweet. I was moved by in the text it said that Nathan rather be a zombie and save Abigail than being human and letting Abigail die. I was moved because that was so sweet and cool of him and letting himself die than letting Abigail die. I thought the ending of the book was pretty good because in the story Abigail lives and as I said I don't like people dying in a story. I understood why Nathan saved Abigail because since he took off the antidote he is a zombie right and since he is a zombie he cant kill himself because of the fire also he wants Abigail to be safe. I can't relate to Nathan because I am not a zombie and I never saved anyone yet because in the text it states that Nathan is a zombie and he saves Abigail. Lastly, the purpose of the author is to entertain the readers because in the story it has funny parts for example in the text Nathan tricked Shawna by putting his finger in the soda and she screamed, it was really funny and disgusting at the same time because the finger moved in the soda. In my mind I was like "ugh that is so gross but funny at the same time LOL. I compare this book to text to world because just like Nathan saving Abigail from the fire the firemen do the same thing they risk their lives just like Nathan (even though Nathan is dead) to save other peoples lives. Well again I did love this book because of the funny parts and all :]. I rate this book like an 9 because I did enjoy it and I was entertained. I recommend this book who like supernatural stuff like zombies. So, what do you think where you entertained by what I told you about this book.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Brian Williams

    MY ROTTEN LIFE: NATHAN ABERCROMBIE, ACCIDENTAL ZOMBIE By David Lubar Yet another book I picked up at ALA11 in New Orleans. They were giving away copies of this already released book. That trip is going to be memorable for years to come for so many reasons but most of all the fact that meet so many cool people and brought home some great books. My Rotten Life: Nathan Abercrombie, Accidental Zombie is a book I didn’t get from standing in a line but a book I found when I was sitting down for a rest wor MY ROTTEN LIFE: NATHAN ABERCROMBIE, ACCIDENTAL ZOMBIE By David Lubar Yet another book I picked up at ALA11 in New Orleans. They were giving away copies of this already released book. That trip is going to be memorable for years to come for so many reasons but most of all the fact that meet so many cool people and brought home some great books. My Rotten Life: Nathan Abercrombie, Accidental Zombie is a book I didn’t get from standing in a line but a book I found when I was sitting down for a rest working on a book of my own and noticed someone had left two copies of it sitting on the floor near the trash can across from where I was seated. One of the things that really bugged Mar and I both while attending the conference was how some people were just grabbing anything free and then later discarding them. We saw books tossed on the floor, in the trash, and many places you should never leave a book. We only tried to get books that we had interest in for the writer, artist, or content. People were being so wasteful and that pissed me off. Not everyone was doing this but enough were for it to bother me a lot. And since these books I found were homeless and mistreated I just had to give them a home. Plus Mar loves zombie stuff so I thought she might like a copy. I’ve read so man Middle Grade books of that that I really enjoyed I’m always looking for more good Middle Grade books. And if you wondering about some Middle Grade books I would recommend here’s a quick list off the top of my head: Dani Noir by Nova Ren Suma, Horton Halfpott by Tom Angleberger, and Peter Nimble And His Fantastic Eyes by Jonathan Auxier to name a few. My Rotten Life turned out to be another great book surprise and when I showed the book to Mar back at the hotel after the day at the convention Mar said she knew the writer and enjoyed his writing so I decided to give it a try even if I’m not the biggest zombie fan. I’m really glad someone was stupid and tossed these. Their lose turns out to be my gain. After finishing Peter Nimble And His Fantastic Eyes this became my before bedtime read and I loved it. I finished it quicker than I normally do before bedtime reads but that’s because I was sick for a few days and read it early in the morning also after making Mar coffee. My Rotten Life is a Middle Grade book by David Lubar about ten year old Nathan Abercrombie. This book is full of great humor, a very well written supporting cast, and a story that moves fast but without any sacrifices in its storytelling for its speed. Though this book has tons of humor it only has some really heart twisting moments when it comes to how Nathan and his friends are treated by the popular kids. And I felt these moments with more strength than a lot of the more graphic nature of some YA books that tackled the issues of bullying and school life. I loved all the characters in this story. Supporting cast, parents, teachers, and settings all took you deeper into this world. Such good craft in the storytelling. One of the better supporting cast of characters in a book I’ve read in a long time of any level, style, or genre. A little note: Everyone talks about the absent parents that are in YA books and that is true in a lot of YA books but it seems like to me Middle Grade books have more of a parental presence in their stories and that’s because of the age of the characters but in books of the quality like that of My Rotten Life you are glad to see more of the parents because they added a lot to the world of this story. From the parents of lead character Nathan to the parents of his friend Abigail the life of the young characters is expanded by including well written parents. Nathan’s friend Mookie is the comedy character you will find in a lot of stories but he’s a great character overall and him being the so called comedy character works even more here because he doesn’t stand out as that “type” of character because of the humor of the other characters. All of the characters in My Rotten Life exist very natural and I loved that take in this type of story instead of only creating stereotypes which is the route a lot of writers would have gone. This story is funny, heart wrenching, gross, and wants me wanting more. I’m glad to have read by the sample at the back of this book that there are plans for more adventures of Nathan Abercrombie, Accidental Zombie. Just checked Amazon and it seems like there are already a couple more in the series out and for sale but also checking my local library shows they don’t have any for check. Sorry to find that out. If I can find some used copies cheap I’ll buy and probably donate. I’ll be keeping the first book though because if I get the chance I would love to get it signed in the future. MY ROTTEN LIFE: NATHAN ABERCROMBIE, ACCIDENTAL ZOMBIE 4 out of 5 stars

  4. 4 out of 5

    Noah Deluca

    I really liked this book, because It's a mix of genres. I really liked the ending, because it described all the details about it, and it was intense. If you want to know what actually happened, and the backstory of how it happened, I would highly recommend this book. I really liked this book, because It's a mix of genres. I really liked the ending, because it described all the details about it, and it was intense. If you want to know what actually happened, and the backstory of how it happened, I would highly recommend this book.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Katy Jean Vance

    I am giving it three stars because it didn't make me laugh out loud, but I think that 9-11 year old boys will be rolling as Nathan Abercrombie almost loses one of his fingers to the neighbor's dog and hangs from parallel bars to upchuck his food (zombies can't digest, you know). I like that it's a series which will appeal to boys who enjoy mild gross-out humor. I see this as an upper elementary book or lower middle school book for had to please readers. I am giving it three stars because it didn't make me laugh out loud, but I think that 9-11 year old boys will be rolling as Nathan Abercrombie almost loses one of his fingers to the neighbor's dog and hangs from parallel bars to upchuck his food (zombies can't digest, you know). I like that it's a series which will appeal to boys who enjoy mild gross-out humor. I see this as an upper elementary book or lower middle school book for had to please readers.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Ingrid

    This was a cute story about a boy who is accidentally turned into a zombie. I liked the three main characters. I also liked how the author spoke about the various cliques at school and how Nathan, the main character dealt with them. I'm looking forward to reading the second book in the series! This was a cute story about a boy who is accidentally turned into a zombie. I liked the three main characters. I also liked how the author spoke about the various cliques at school and how Nathan, the main character dealt with them. I'm looking forward to reading the second book in the series!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Mouse

    My 9 year old son rated it 5 stars as he seemed to really enjoy it. He said he wants to read more books in the series and recommends it for kids his age. He thought it was funny, not scary or gross and the main character had cool abilities almost like a superhero.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Kesha

    Tremendously cute tale about friendship, and overcoming embarassment that involves zombies.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Amy

    I enjoyed the character interactions in this—most especially the look at the way students treat each other and the “categories” people fall into. Popularity in young adulthood is so vitally important to young people—this looks at what you’re willing to put up with to achieve it. I didn’t realize when I started that it was part of a series. It’ll be interesting to see where they take it.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Christy

    A good zombie friendship book for my 4th graders.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Melanie

    My 8 year old son liked it, but wasn't clamoring for me to read it to him. He read some of it on his own (he doesn't like to read). Found it slow going, but he liked the story. My 8 year old son liked it, but wasn't clamoring for me to read it to him. He read some of it on his own (he doesn't like to read). Found it slow going, but he liked the story.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Anna

    Read with middle school students. They loved it.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Madhu MaBookYard -

    My Rating : 3🌟 . This book follows Nathan who one day goes to a friend's uncle house looking for a cure to numb his emotions, Unable to digest all the bullying. But accidents happen and he starts turning into a zombie! Will he be able to find a cure? Will he become human again? . The first thing I loved about this book was the fact it was really easy going and dealt with a lot of bullying at school and how not to react to it. It was really handled in a simple yet effective way. . The second thing was, My Rating : 3🌟 . This book follows Nathan who one day goes to a friend's uncle house looking for a cure to numb his emotions, Unable to digest all the bullying. But accidents happen and he starts turning into a zombie! Will he be able to find a cure? Will he become human again? . The first thing I loved about this book was the fact it was really easy going and dealt with a lot of bullying at school and how not to react to it. It was really handled in a simple yet effective way. . The second thing was, Don't judge a book by it's cover! I was really impressed by how the book ended! . If you are looking for a book that deals with friendship, zombies, adventure, and a very short & easy read, I recommend you pick this up! .

  14. 5 out of 5

    Becky

    Nathan Abercrombie is not popular and he's having one of the worst days ever. The girl he likes has just ripped his heart out and then he gets picked last for baseball teams, even after the kid who spends his life with his hand jammed into his armpit/nose/ear/etc. Just when it looks like his day can't get any worse, his friend, Abigail invites Nathan and his best friend, Mookie, over to her uncle's laboratory. Nathan is accidently doused with a strange chemical that leaves him a half zombie! Wha Nathan Abercrombie is not popular and he's having one of the worst days ever. The girl he likes has just ripped his heart out and then he gets picked last for baseball teams, even after the kid who spends his life with his hand jammed into his armpit/nose/ear/etc. Just when it looks like his day can't get any worse, his friend, Abigail invites Nathan and his best friend, Mookie, over to her uncle's laboratory. Nathan is accidently doused with a strange chemical that leaves him a half zombie! What's a 5th grader to do when he finds out that he's half dead and still has to go to school? This is a book for boys. Filled with gross out humor (that, yes, made me laugh), video games, and gym class popularity, it's guaranteed to entertain most middle grade boys. Nathan is a character boys will relate to. He reminded me of Greg, from Diary of a Wimpy Kid, except a little less self centered. Nathan is a "second bester,” which means that he's not good enough to be popular and not bad enough to be a complete loser. He and his friends are at the bottom of the middle. They're the second skinniest kid in school, the second fattest, second funniest, and so on. Nathan, second skinniest, is tired of being hurt by the kids in his class, but Abigail's uncle seems to have a cure with his "Hurt-Be-Gone" solution. Unfortunately, the solution is what ends up turning Nathan into a half zombie. Now, you're probably thinking, "Half zombie? What in the world is that?" Half zombie means that Nathan is alive, but doesn't need to do anything to maintain his life. He doesn't need to eat, drink, breathe, or have a heartbeat, but he's not really dead. This has its ups and downs. He might not be able to eat his favorite food anymore, or heal when he gets hurt, but he also doesn't get tired or feel pain...ever. If you're looking for a fun book for middle grade boys, this one is perfect. There's lots of stuff to gross them out and crack them up and it's written in a fast paced style that will keep even the most reluctant readers turning pages. There's even a discussion guide at the back of the book, so teachers/librarians/parents can take the opportunity to talk to kids about something they'll really like! Check out My Rotten Life at the library or your local bookstore!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer Wardrip

    Reviewed by Jaglvr for TeensReadToo.com Never say that you are having a bad day. Nothing can compare to the day Nathan has had! When he wants to just get rid of his bad feelings, the new girl, Abigail, suggests that her uncle has a magic potion in his lab that can do the trick! So Nathan, his best friend, Mookie, and Abigail head off to the lab to get the "Hurt Be Gone." But at the lab, Nathan is splashed by some strange liquid and soon, he starts to feel weird. When he reports to Abigail that his Reviewed by Jaglvr for TeensReadToo.com Never say that you are having a bad day. Nothing can compare to the day Nathan has had! When he wants to just get rid of his bad feelings, the new girl, Abigail, suggests that her uncle has a magic potion in his lab that can do the trick! So Nathan, his best friend, Mookie, and Abigail head off to the lab to get the "Hurt Be Gone." But at the lab, Nathan is splashed by some strange liquid and soon, he starts to feel weird. When he reports to Abigail that his body doesn't feel right and things are happening, they try to go back to the lab. However, they soon discover that Abigail's uncle had to run from the law, and he can no longer help them. Nathan is dejected, but goes on with his life. When he gets poked in the nose with a fork, and no blood comes out, he knows that he's in serious trouble. He also starts to give off a foul stench. It's Mookie who discovers that Nathan isn't digesting his food anymore and helps him in a creative way to relieve himself of his stomach contents. Abigail is certain she can help Nathan, so the three begin a quest for the ingredients Abigail will require. The three friends hit the aquarium, the woods, and even manage an invitation to Shawna's (the popular girl's) party to find the things they need. MY ROTTEN LIFE is a story that will certainly appeal to boys. With lots of gross talk and body parts falling off, they will be giggling and enraptured until the final page. Listening to the story as an audio book will add more appeal, because the narrators are able to read the descriptions in vivid detail. Read by both male and female voices, the story moves quickly as Nathan struggles to retain his humanity. MY ROTTEN LIFE is the perfect story for young readers to pick up, especially during the Halloween season.

  16. 4 out of 5

    ☼Book her, Danno☼

    Some days just stink. Nathan Abercrombie is having the worst day of his life. To say that it was horrible would be an understatement. First off, he's diss'd by the prettiest girl in school-- the one he just happens to have a huge crush on. Then he's chosen last during gym. And then... and then, in a foolish effort to ease the heartache of being stuck forever at the losers' table, he gets talked into visiting a mad scientist, where he accidentally gets doused with an experimental fluid that leaves Some days just stink. Nathan Abercrombie is having the worst day of his life. To say that it was horrible would be an understatement. First off, he's diss'd by the prettiest girl in school-- the one he just happens to have a huge crush on. Then he's chosen last during gym. And then... and then, in a foolish effort to ease the heartache of being stuck forever at the losers' table, he gets talked into visiting a mad scientist, where he accidentally gets doused with an experimental fluid that leaves him dying, one inch at a time. I won't disclose the rest of the plot (nor the twist at the end), but suffice it to say that Nathan and Abigail (the mad scientist's neice) and Nathan's best friend Mookie, end up on a hunt for a cure for Nathan's zombie-like condition. A hunt that teaches them quite a few life lessons. Wrap-Up::: If you've got a kid who has a funny bone and who likes a little gross humor, point them at My Rotten Life. It's a light-hearted book that they should amuse most kids (and mom's like me!). David Lubar's jazzy writing keeps the story moving along. And I swear he had me chuckling outloud on just about every page. Funny and insightful, Nathan Abercrombie, Accidental Zombie ought make a good Read-aloud. Now that I've finished the book, I plan on sharing it with my 7- and 9- year-olds. No foul language. No unseemliness, unless you count a little rotting flesh. Pam mom and Reviewer at BooksForKids-reviews

  17. 4 out of 5

    Karin

    Nathan Abercrombie is the second skinniest kid at school. He spends most of his time with the second tallest kid, the second fattest kid, and the second fastest kid. He doesn’t have a lot of friends and he’s used to being picked last for sports in PE, but for the most part, it doesn’t bother him. Until, the girl he’s been crushing on for a long time embarrasses him in front of the entire cafeteria. He is desperate to stop feeling the pain in his heart. Things only get worse for him when Abigail, Nathan Abercrombie is the second skinniest kid at school. He spends most of his time with the second tallest kid, the second fattest kid, and the second fastest kid. He doesn’t have a lot of friends and he’s used to being picked last for sports in PE, but for the most part, it doesn’t bother him. Until, the girl he’s been crushing on for a long time embarrasses him in front of the entire cafeteria. He is desperate to stop feeling the pain in his heart. Things only get worse for him when Abigail, a girl from school, takes him to see her scientist uncle for an experimental cure for feelings and gets doused with serum. Soon he realizes he doesn’t feel quite right. He doesn’t get sleepy, he can’t digest food, he doesn’t blink, and he doesn’t breathe. His best friend, Mookie, finally decides the only answer that makes sense is that Nathan is becoming a zombie. After the initial shock wears off, Nathan decides living life half dead isn’t all that bad, but does he want to stay like this forever? After he has to glue his thumb back on, he decides he needs to do whatever it takes to find a cure. Together the three of them, Abigail, Mookie, and Nathan, attempt to stop him from turning into a complete and total zombie. MY ROTTEN LIFE is a quick and humorous story about the importance and meaning of true friendship. MY ROTTEN LIFE is the first in the Nathan Abercrombie, Accidental Zombie series. The second book, DEAD GUY SPY is set to be released January 2010.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Angie

    Nathan Ambercrombie was having a really bad day. He has been getting picked on constantly by the popular kids at school and by his teachers. The this strange girl Abagail offers him a way to make all the hurt and embarrassment go away. Her uncle has developed Hurt-be-Gone and Nathan signs up to try it. Unfortunately, his friend Mookie spills the entire serum on him and bad things start to happen. Nathan does feel anything but he also doesn't eat or go to the bathroom anymore and he starts loosin Nathan Ambercrombie was having a really bad day. He has been getting picked on constantly by the popular kids at school and by his teachers. The this strange girl Abagail offers him a way to make all the hurt and embarrassment go away. Her uncle has developed Hurt-be-Gone and Nathan signs up to try it. Unfortunately, his friend Mookie spills the entire serum on him and bad things start to happen. Nathan does feel anything but he also doesn't eat or go to the bathroom anymore and he starts loosing body parts. Nathan is turning into a ZOMBIE! Abagail says she can fix it with rare ingredients but there has to be some part of Nathan that is still alive for the antidote to work. If they don't get it in time Nathan will be a zombie forever. This was a fun book that I am sure boys are going to love. There is enough gross humor and adventure to satisfy most young readers. I loved the interactions between Nathan, Mookie and Abagail. They were great characters and really fun to read. I thought their friendship was a nice counterpoint to the mean popular kids. Those kids seemed liked your typical mean kids who get whatever they want and expect everyone else to fall in line. Sure there wasn't much depth to them but that was to be expected. I have to say that I really enjoyed the ending and Nathan's journey from nobody to hero. I received a signed copy of this book from the author at PLA 2012.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Marsha

    Most kids have bad days. But Nathan’s days get an unusual twist when he gets doused with a potion to erase feelings and instead gets turned into a zombie. Nathan’s natural (or rather unnatural) progression into one of the undead is persuasive. It shows, oddly enough, the perks of losing all feeling in your body—not needing to eat or sleep, performing all sorts of strenuous physical activities without getting winded (a boon for a kid with asthma), being able to face tense situations without break Most kids have bad days. But Nathan’s days get an unusual twist when he gets doused with a potion to erase feelings and instead gets turned into a zombie. Nathan’s natural (or rather unnatural) progression into one of the undead is persuasive. It shows, oddly enough, the perks of losing all feeling in your body—not needing to eat or sleep, performing all sorts of strenuous physical activities without getting winded (a boon for a kid with asthma), being able to face tense situations without breaking a sweat or losing your nerves and going swimming without coming up for air. Neat! Of course, there’s always a down side. Nathan has to strive to appear normal to an eagle-eyed mother while acing unbeatable video games and trying to keep from freaking out his classmates (no sensitivity means no watery eyes which means going without blinking for really LOOOONG periods of time). His difficulties with His attempts to make himself human again, a real live boy, wind themselves amusingly through the thread of his self discoveries. However, the ending felt contrived, his return to the zombie state forced through an inconvenient fire and the baffling abandonment of a true friend. I realize the author wanted to make this into a series but a better way could have found besides this.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    Nathan thinks he has a rotten life...but things get much worse after he gets some experimental liquid called “Hurt-Be-Gone accidentally spilled on him! After that, parts of his body start losing feeling, he stops digesting food, and he doesn’t need to go to the bathroom! His friends Mookie and Abigail help him get the ingredients for the mixture that will stop him from becoming a total zombie—ingredients that include a scale from a rare breed of fish and a strange mushroom. The problem is, he mus Nathan thinks he has a rotten life...but things get much worse after he gets some experimental liquid called “Hurt-Be-Gone accidentally spilled on him! After that, parts of his body start losing feeling, he stops digesting food, and he doesn’t need to go to the bathroom! His friends Mookie and Abigail help him get the ingredients for the mixture that will stop him from becoming a total zombie—ingredients that include a scale from a rare breed of fish and a strange mushroom. The problem is, he must have at least a little bit of feeling somewhere on his body for the mixture to work. The more time that passes, the more he losses feeling everywhere! Will the mixture be ready in time for him to use before he become a walking dead boy? This is a funny story with very likable characters. Nathan’s friend Mookie was probably my favorite with his laid-back attitude. Even Nathan, who is very unhappy about becoming a walking dead boy, deals with his zombie-ness as best as he can. It appears as though a sequel is on its way. Recommend this book to those who enjoy the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series (Kinney) and the Captain Underpants books (Pilkey).

  21. 5 out of 5

    DrewBrees

    My Rotten Life by David Lubar talks about an unpopular boy thats having a really bad day. Just when he thinks things can't get much worse, it does. After being picked on by kids at school, a strange girl Abigail, invites Nathan to try out an experiment that could cure his pain of embarrassment. Just as he's about to try the -Hurt-Be-Gone invented by Abigail, his best friend Mookie spills it on him which brings things downwards from there. As the three try to find a cure for Nathan, Weird things My Rotten Life by David Lubar talks about an unpopular boy thats having a really bad day. Just when he thinks things can't get much worse, it does. After being picked on by kids at school, a strange girl Abigail, invites Nathan to try out an experiment that could cure his pain of embarrassment. Just as he's about to try the -Hurt-Be-Gone invented by Abigail, his best friend Mookie spills it on him which brings things downwards from there. As the three try to find a cure for Nathan, Weird things start happening to him like loosing feeling of parts of his body. I picked up this book, because I've had this book for a while and never actually read it. The cover seemed interesting to me so I decided to read it and see what it talks about. I finished this book, because as I started it, the book was a bit confusing to me. But as I hope I'd catch on later, I did and actually found the book really interesting further and further on. I think my friends would like the read this book because it's a relaxing yet interesting book that doesn't create too much unanswered questions causing too much thinking.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Kristen Harvey

    Nathan isn't the coolest kid in the class - not even close. In fact, he was having a pretty bad day until he decides to look into his friend's crazy uncle's experimental Hurt-Be-Gone - only it accidentally gets poured all over him. There was one fatal error in the concoction - instead of using the corpus flower, he had used the corpse flower, and now, Nathan is slowly becoming undead - a zombie. But life as a zombie isn't half bad. He doesn't need to use his lungs any more so gym class is no swea Nathan isn't the coolest kid in the class - not even close. In fact, he was having a pretty bad day until he decides to look into his friend's crazy uncle's experimental Hurt-Be-Gone - only it accidentally gets poured all over him. There was one fatal error in the concoction - instead of using the corpus flower, he had used the corpse flower, and now, Nathan is slowly becoming undead - a zombie. But life as a zombie isn't half bad. He doesn't need to use his lungs any more so gym class is no sweat. He can't feel any pain so if a bully hits him, what does he care? Nathan has to decide if it's worth taking the cure or not. I really enjoyed this book - it had enough gross-ness to appeal to boys, a funny enough plot to appeal to boys and girls, and great themes - friendship, bullying, and what's important in life or undead. The characters were interesting and the plot kept you turning the page. I almost expected the ending, just because it seemed to work out a little too perfectly to be the end of the first book. Overall, a fantastic read - right in time for Halloween.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Natisha

    Both my 10 yr old son and I read this book. I received the sequel to this book as an ARC, and after reading the first chapter, I HAD to buy the this book. I prefer reading books in sequence, even though sequel stood nicely on it's own. This book was absolutely hilarious. It had both my older son and I cracking up (the younger son hasn't gotten a chance to read it since it fell into the clutches of boy#1). Nathan thought his life was rotten until Abigail's estranged uncle spilled Hurt-Be-Gone on N Both my 10 yr old son and I read this book. I received the sequel to this book as an ARC, and after reading the first chapter, I HAD to buy the this book. I prefer reading books in sequence, even though sequel stood nicely on it's own. This book was absolutely hilarious. It had both my older son and I cracking up (the younger son hasn't gotten a chance to read it since it fell into the clutches of boy#1). Nathan thought his life was rotten until Abigail's estranged uncle spilled Hurt-Be-Gone on Nathan. He started losing feeling in his body parts, his food didn't digest, and he couldn't sleep. Unfortunately, and the man responsible has disappeared. There's a cure, but how are Nathan and his two friends, Mookie and Abigail, going to help him get it? The gross-out factor kept my son reading and giggling. And kids can identify with bullly problem Nathan had in the story. I'm not going to say more about the actual plot, because you need to read this book. It's full of fun, adventure, humor, spy antics, and more.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Diana

    Nathan Abercrombie was your average Second-Bester, not quite the worst at something, but still not good enough to really be noticed. That didn't stop him from having his heart stomped on by his crush, getting picked last at PE, and being taunted for his lack of video game skills. Desperate to not feel rejected anymore, he take quiet Abigail up on her offer to fix him. Her mad-scientist uncle is working on a formula that make people not feel sad anymore, Hurt-be-gone. After an accident leads to a Nathan Abercrombie was your average Second-Bester, not quite the worst at something, but still not good enough to really be noticed. That didn't stop him from having his heart stomped on by his crush, getting picked last at PE, and being taunted for his lack of video game skills. Desperate to not feel rejected anymore, he take quiet Abigail up on her offer to fix him. Her mad-scientist uncle is working on a formula that make people not feel sad anymore, Hurt-be-gone. After an accident leads to an entire beaker being spilt on him, Nate experiences an odd sideeffect - he doesn't feel anything at all! His heart is no longer breathing, his lungs don't need to work. Basically, he's walking dead. Now with Abigal and his friend Mookie, Nate must find a way to become alive again, before the Hurt-Be-Gone becomes permanent... Great story, hilarious, with good friendships and characters. Will appeal to fans of Lubar's other books, as well as anyone who likes quirky humor.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Carmine

    cute premise-...boy agrees to become guinea pig in a science experiment that promises life without pain after being dissed by popular girl. Things go awry when the potion slowly starts turning him into a zombie- now that he doesn't sleep he can master video games to wow his peers, breath under water, do hundreds of pull ups, etc. The quest to undo his increasingly corpse-like physiology brings him closer to his friends- his old buddy, the chubby boy with flatulence issues and his new friend, the cute premise-...boy agrees to become guinea pig in a science experiment that promises life without pain after being dissed by popular girl. Things go awry when the potion slowly starts turning him into a zombie- now that he doesn't sleep he can master video games to wow his peers, breath under water, do hundreds of pull ups, etc. The quest to undo his increasingly corpse-like physiology brings him closer to his friends- his old buddy, the chubby boy with flatulence issues and his new friend, the quiet genius girl whom he had previously ignored but now is his last hope for non-zombie existence. the characters don't exactly leave you hungry for the next one, but the ending leaves it wide open for book number two. The zombie factor might be enough to carry it for some reluctant younger middle grade readers. The missing thumb as promised by the cover art actually happens in the book.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Raina

    Have you ever wanted to be a zombie? Definitely not my normal fare. Silly, gross humor, crazy plot, fun characters. Good elementary appeal. There are disadvantages and advantages to zombiness. Like, you can't eat (well, you can, but the food won't digest and just sloshes around in your stomach), and you can't feel pain, which means you don't notice when your fingers fall off. But on the other hand, you can't feel pain! And you can do things that would normally be really hard (like playing video Have you ever wanted to be a zombie? Definitely not my normal fare. Silly, gross humor, crazy plot, fun characters. Good elementary appeal. There are disadvantages and advantages to zombiness. Like, you can't eat (well, you can, but the food won't digest and just sloshes around in your stomach), and you can't feel pain, which means you don't notice when your fingers fall off. But on the other hand, you can't feel pain! And you can do things that would normally be really hard (like playing video games and pull-ups). So, which would you rather be? Lots of fart jokes, gross scenes, and stereotypical teachers, but there's a sense of fun with that. Although I hated that they used two narrators - one for all the narrators and the male voices, one for all the female voices. Most narrators can handle both genders, what's wrong with Matthew Brown?

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kathleen Behrendt

    This first book in a series sets the stage for the rest. Fifth-grader Nathan Abercrombie is so tired of having his feelings hurt by the popular kids (last to be picked for teams, not invited to parties, etc) that he agrees to try an experimental formula, Hurt-Be-Gone. Unfortunately, he gets results he wasn't expecting - he turns into a half-dead zombie! The action progresses as his friends try to find a cure for Nathan. The twist at the end of the book is totally unexpected and will be appreciat This first book in a series sets the stage for the rest. Fifth-grader Nathan Abercrombie is so tired of having his feelings hurt by the popular kids (last to be picked for teams, not invited to parties, etc) that he agrees to try an experimental formula, Hurt-Be-Gone. Unfortunately, he gets results he wasn't expecting - he turns into a half-dead zombie! The action progresses as his friends try to find a cure for Nathan. The twist at the end of the book is totally unexpected and will be appreciated by readers. I would recommend this book to readers, especially boys, in third grade and up, looking for a funny book with an "ick factor". This book would also be a good recommendation for readers who are not yet ready for true horror stories or stories about supernatural creatures. This would make a funny read aloud.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    Fifth grader Nathan feels like he has nothing going for him and he feels pretty down about it. Abigail, a fellow "loser" tells him she can get her uncle to cure him with Hurt-Be-Gone. Instead of just taking a sip of the concoction, Nathan spills it all over himself and finds he can't feel a thing. Soon he isn't even breathing or blinking....he has become a zombie! Abigail, Nathan and his friend Mookie must find the elements of the cure before Nathan stays a zombie forever! Cute, quick, smart youn Fifth grader Nathan feels like he has nothing going for him and he feels pretty down about it. Abigail, a fellow "loser" tells him she can get her uncle to cure him with Hurt-Be-Gone. Instead of just taking a sip of the concoction, Nathan spills it all over himself and finds he can't feel a thing. Soon he isn't even breathing or blinking....he has become a zombie! Abigail, Nathan and his friend Mookie must find the elements of the cure before Nathan stays a zombie forever! Cute, quick, smart young read. Although Nathan doesn't crave brains and can still talk like a human, he is still a zombie. He is also a young kid just dealing with popularity, pressure in sports, and even his friends deal with some heavy things like dead dads and being overweight and being smart. This book surprised me with those subjects.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Abby Johnson

    Nathan Abercrombie is worse than the school's biggest loser - he's one of the Second Besters, the kids who are only ever second best at anything (and completely invisible to everyone but each other). When he is doused by a serum that slowly turns his body into a walking dead zombie, Nathan will have to figure out the antidote before it's too late. It's wacky, but not stupid and I'd quickly hand it over to boys in grades 3-5. Nathan and his antics will be appreciated by fans of Diary of a Wimpy K Nathan Abercrombie is worse than the school's biggest loser - he's one of the Second Besters, the kids who are only ever second best at anything (and completely invisible to everyone but each other). When he is doused by a serum that slowly turns his body into a walking dead zombie, Nathan will have to figure out the antidote before it's too late. It's wacky, but not stupid and I'd quickly hand it over to boys in grades 3-5. Nathan and his antics will be appreciated by fans of Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Bruce Coville. It's gross and sometimes silly, but the story has a lot of heart, too. Read my full review on my blog: http://abbylibrarian.blogspot.com/200...

  30. 4 out of 5

    Amy Brown

    Great book on CD. Two narrators, one for the female voices and one for the male voices. Loved this story (which I'm sure is just the first in a series). A boy Nathan Abercrombie accidentally gets doused with an experimental liquid called hurt-be-gone. Instead of taking away hurt feelings, it's slowly turning Nathan into a Zombie who can't feel any pain. Can Nathan, with the help of two friends, find a cure before he is completely dead? This book would be very easy to booktalk. There's a gross ou Great book on CD. Two narrators, one for the female voices and one for the male voices. Loved this story (which I'm sure is just the first in a series). A boy Nathan Abercrombie accidentally gets doused with an experimental liquid called hurt-be-gone. Instead of taking away hurt feelings, it's slowly turning Nathan into a Zombie who can't feel any pain. Can Nathan, with the help of two friends, find a cure before he is completely dead? This book would be very easy to booktalk. There's a gross out factor to the book that boys will love because of some things that happen to Nathan since he is a semi-zombie. Besides the humor and the grossness, the book addresses issues of friendship, bullying, and popularity.

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