#477 – High-Voltage Danger Lab: Nick and Tesla #1 by “Science Bob” Pflugfelder & Steve Hockensmith

NickTesla_9JNick and Tesla’s High-Voltage Danger Lab: A Mystery with Electromagnets, Burglar Alarms, and Other Gadgets You Can Build Yourself

by “Science Bob” Pflugfelder and Steve Hockensmith

Scott Garrett, illustrator

Quirk Books   November t5, 2013

978-1-59474-648-2 (HC)     978-1-59747-662-8 (EB)

Age 9 to 12    240 pages

Back over

“Nick and Tesla are bright 11-year-old siblings with a knack for science, electronics, and getting into trouble. When their sent to California they’re sent to live with their eccentric Uncle Newt, they discover their new neighborhood is full of surprises: an abandoned house at the end of the block, a mysterious girl in an upstairs window, and an ominous black SUV that tails their every move. To solve the mystery and save their skins, Nick and Tesla will use everyday household objects to build electromagnets, rocket launchers, burglar alarms, and other crazy contraptions—and illustrated instructions are included throughout the story so you can build them, too.”

“Fearless Tesla and sensitive Nick are a tenacious and entertaining team, and their new friends and offbeat uncle create a strong supporting cast.” – Publisher’s Weekly


High-Voltage Danger Lab is the beginning of a series that should entice every middle school aged kid. Along with a great story are instructions to the projects Nick and Tesla use to solve mysteries, stay safe, and have fun. The first is a bottle rocket with its own PVC launcher. The instructions are easy to understand. Heck, I think I can make any of the gadgets with those instructions. That initial project sets the story in motion. The twin’s parents are checking out soybean growth in Uzbekistan. The kids are spending the summer with one person they never visit alone—eccentric, memory-addled, slightly crazy, but genius Uncle Newt.


Bored, while Uncle Newt showers the orange “Gunk” (not yet trademarked, may be patented), the twins build a Mentos™ powered rocket. It launches, and then flies over the high fence into the yard of an old mansion, now under reconstruction. Worse than losing the rocket, Tesla’s necklace found its way onto the rocket. The necklace matched her brother’s and they were to keep them on at all times.

This problem has an easy fix. One of the kids needs to climb the fence and retrieve the rocket and necklace. Only problem is, Jaws and Claws were looking mighty hungry. Nick makes it back in one piece, but not before seeing a pale, thin, young girl in an upper window. She tells the kids, by way of a note, to stay away. So, who is the girl in the window? Why does a construction crew of two need the security of Jaws and Claws? And why has a black SUV been following the twins since the taxi ride from the airport?

use 1


High-Voltage Danger Lab has wonderful, sometimes geeky, but always entertaining characters. The little town the kids are in, Half Moon Bay, is as eccentric as their uncle is. This makes a great setting for this story and the ones to follow. Nick and Tesla remind me of the Templeton Twins, who also use gadgets in their stories. As the Nick and Tesla’s guardian, Uncle Newt has much to learn. He is quite a child himself, which has served him well in his career as an inventor. Even such mundane tasks as feeding the twins are a conundrum to Uncle Newt. Most nights he fixes Spaghetti O’s.™  I am guessing Uncle Newton will be learning new parenting skills throughout the summer.


High-Voltage Danger Lab is “Science Bob” Pflugfelder’s debut. Magazines, such as People and Popular Science have featured his experiments, as have Jimmy Kimmel Live and Dr. Oz. Co-author Steve Hockensmith, a New York Times Best-Selling author, adds to this winning formula making Tesla and Nick—an obvious homage to Nicholas Tesla—one of the best new series for middle graders. High-Voltage Danger Lab is an adventure that is both entertaining and educational. The illustrations are black and white sketches in the ARC I received. I cannot comment on the final version, but the illustrations I have are good. I enjoyed reading High-Voltage Danger Lab—a reference to Uncle Newt’s basement lab—and very much want to read the next two due out later this year.


Learn more about Nick and Tesla’s Adventures HERE

Buy the book at Amazon – B&NQuirk Books


Learn more about “Science Bob” Pflugfelder:    website     facebook     twitter      youtube      G+      linkedin      IMDb

Learn more about Steve Hockensmith:        website    facebook    twitter

Learn more about Scott Garrett:    website    blog    facebook    twitter    G+    pinterest    behance    glossom

Find more Quirk Books:    website    raisingquirk     facebook    twitter    pinterest    youtube    vimeo    linkedin    scribd    tumblr     goodreads


NICK AND TESLA, #1: HIGH-VOLTAGE DANGER LAB. Text copyright © 2013 by Science Bob Pflugfelder & Steve Hockensmith. Illustrations copyright © 2013 by Scott Garrett. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Quirk Books, Philadelphia, PA.


robotrampage_final_72  nick and tesla 2.


Robot Army Rampage   2/04/2014



secret agent gadget battle.


Secret Agent Gadget Battle   5/06/2014



SMALL FRY SAFARI 2014 (3) – Entry 4 someone’s name in title (“Nick and Tesla”)

sfari challenge 1








.nick and tesla 1 discl.



13 thoughts on “#477 – High-Voltage Danger Lab: Nick and Tesla #1 by “Science Bob” Pflugfelder & Steve Hockensmith

  1. Pingback: Quick Thoughts: “Nick and Tesla’s High-Voltage Danger Lab” | The Cheap Reader

  2. Pingback: Nick and Tesla’s High-Voltage Danger Lab: A Mystery with Electromagnets, Burglar Alarms, and Other Gadgets You Can Build Yourself | Science Book a Day

    • Oh, I think you would LOVE these books. The next is about robots and building them is kind of like building with Legos. I can see you building all the rockets, and robotics, and who knows what else these books bring.


  3. Well, the high voltage danger LAB caught my eye and i got a real rush of adrenaline or something. I was a little disappointed that it was a different kind of LAB, but am intrigued nonetheless. Science fun is big at our house. BIG. This looks like an excellent book to find for our library. Those videos were fabulous! Thanks for sharing!


    • You made me laugh. I am so sorry to have confused you. I see now how it looks like it could be a book about a dog. I have no idea what a high-voltage labrador would act but it is intriguing. The next book involves robots and the third gadgets, just not sure what kind. Science Bob is a hoot, isn’t he?


  4. Great review! This looks like a really fun book. Paws on experiments with projectiles! I do hope they’ve included a disclaimer. One never knows.


    • I was sent that one also. It is released next month and the third will be out in May. I love the videos on Jimmy Kimmel. To my knowledge, none of the things he did on that show are in any of the books. Mostly, so far all, have been gadgets kids can replicate fairly easily.

      So glad your son liked the second book. Would he like to review it here? I would love to have a guest review and a kid reviewing a book he loved would be great. I will have the images. All I’d need is his review, not the other parts I put up. How old is he? Now I am excited. Sorry, I am getting ahead of myself. 🙂 Let me try this again.

      If your son is interested, I would love to have him on this site.


      • I am sorry to take so very long replying to this – there’s apparently a big disconnect between seeing something online when my son is at school and actually remembering to ask him, and then remembering that I need to get back to you with his answer. In any case, I did ask him (he’s 9), and he is interested, if you are still interested in having him review. And thank you for the offer!


If you like this post ... Why?

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.