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Brainboy and the DeathMaster Hardcover – October 7, 2003

4.2 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 5-7-A fast-paced, science-fiction adventure. Darryl recently lost his entire family in a horrible fire, and now resides at an orphanage funded by Keith Masterly, founder of the world's largest computer empire. After Darryl plays exceptionally well on the version of "Stargate" found on the laptop in his room, he's unexpectedly adopted and whisked away by Masterly himself. At first, the boy is thrilled to be a part of Paradise Lab, where there are lots of other smart kids like him, all helping Masterly conduct science experiments aimed at "conquering time." But Darryl and his friend Nina come to realize that Masterly's ultimate goals are deadly, and it's up to them to rescue everyone from a madman's evil grip. Though the plot, and especially the ending, is far-fetched, Seidler has created empathetic characters and writes at a level that is accessible even to readers not usually drawn to this genre. Despite the high-tech backdrop, it is Darryl's emotional journey that resonates and makes this novel a worthwhile purchase.
Ronni Krasnow, New York Public Library
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

Gr. 4-7. Twelve-year-old Darryl Kirby lost his entire family in a fire. His subsequent placement in the Masterly Children's Shelter introduces him to Boris and BJ and to StarMaster 3, a video game more intricate than any he's ever encountered. The first couple of chapters are a bit of a snooze for the reader not heavily into PlayStation culture, but Brainboy quickly morphs into an absorbing thriller about a group of brainy orphans recruited by software guru Keith Masterly to further his sinister plans. Darryl uncovers the purpose for Masterly's luxury think tank and his ultimate plan for the orphans' demise. From there, the story flows smoothly between the captive "team's" escape plan and the savvy detective work of the kids on the outside, who are left wondering about the fate of their friends. As rich in texture as the novels of Avi and Gail Carson Levine, Brainboy deftly bridges the gap between the young-adult thriller of a past generation and the high-tech adventures of this one. Terry Glover
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 and up
  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; 1 edition (October 7, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060291818
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060291815
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,832,522 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
My wife, a children's librarian, had me read this book, and overall, I was pleased with it. It's particularly appropriate for intelligent children who may feel different at school because of their intelligence. Some of the themes of this book seem borrowed from the famous "Ender's Game," which is a favorite among highly intelligent young readers, as both books deal with identifying and utilizing the skills of highly intelligent children.
This book has several other appeals. It's generally fast-paced, which makes it good for most children/young adults. It deals with real issues, such as death in the family, children with no parents, children with single-parents, inter-racial friendships, etc. And all issues seem to be handled quite well.
It also has realistic dialogue among suburban kids, which many books find difficult to achieve. It also doesn't talk down to kids, nor get preachy about how kids should behave. (i.e. one of the main child characters is a chain smoker and a thief).
And despite taking some guidance from "Ender's Game," it does manage a very innovative concept, which I found enjoyable. I was genuinely interested to finish the book and see how it was all resolved.
Overall, I recommend this book for parents who wish to get their children interested in reading. Its fast-paced nature, handling of real issues, and its focus on video games should make most children very willing to read this book. I just suggest that parents discuss some of the issues raised in the book with their children, because it deals with mature concepts and delinquent behaviors.
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A Kid's Review on September 28, 2005
Format: Hardcover
This story is cool!It is about a boy who was an orphan because his family was burned in a fire.He survives becauce he was in his treehouse when the house burned down.In the story he makes a friend.His friend BJ was about to adopt him but it was to late.A rich guy adopts him.He makes them take pills.In his house there was no windows or telephones.His friend BJ gets worry because he hasn`t heard of his friend.BJ`s other friend is looking for his sister.Meanwhile they find out that the rich person actually owns a game and they find out that the both people they were looking for were with him.Meanwhile the main character is working on this thing that helps you get young.At the end of this incredible book at the end the main character finds out that the rich guy was using them and after they found out how to make people young he was going to kill them.So then thy all escape from a vent.So when they found out that they were going to die the main character puts a lot of the young potion in his drink.So then the bad guy sets a bomb on the mountain.When the bad guy escapes BJ comes and helps them out.So they escape from the mountain.Later the bad guy turns into a baby while his in the holicopter and dies.So then BJ adopts the main character and thats how this story finishes.

I surely recommend this book for people who like action books. -Roberto O
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Format: Kindle Edition
This book is about a young orphan who develops friendships along his way to a new world of opportunities. Darryl created a special formula which helped the villian. Kirby didn't know at first, but soon finds himself wrapped in an amazing adventure. This book is unlike aything I've ever read. It is just... breathtaking and awesome beyond any reason!
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Format: Kindle Edition
Brainboy and the Deathmaster by Tor Seidler is a sci-fi book. The story is about an orphan named Darryl Kirby. Darryl Kirby is extremely skillful when it comes to videogames. When a new version of his favorite game, Starmaster, comes out he begins to play it. But he notices that something is different. It's almost as if the game had a mind of its own...Brainboy and the Deathmaster is an average book when it comes to plot and storyline. Yet the book still manages to keep you hooked. Overall the book was an enjoyable and fun read.
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Format: Paperback
My book's title was: "Brainboy and the DEATHMASTER." This story is about and orphan named Darryl Kirby. He's a whiz at computer games. He could get through a maze in 2 minutes with 30 seconds to spare! He's that good. Although his GameMaster ( a very fun game system made by Keith Masterly, 3 lets him forget about that. StarMaster was his favorite game where you travel in a fleet of ships to help the galaxy.

Later, Keith Masterly adopts Darryl and takes him to his... large, hotel, lab, place. Soon, Darryl uncovers a sinister plan that only the greatest inventor ever!) got stolen by some punk. But a new game found on a laptop called different dinosaurs. I felt like I was there. The details drew me in, like that I was Darryl. This is a must read StarMaster I'm not going to tell you. But it involves lots of explosions.

My favorite part was when Darryl was in Keith Masterly's large "place," he went into a pod where he rode around under water and saw many to sci-fi and adventure lovers. On a scale of 1 to 10 I'd give it a 9.99 continued.
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A Kid's Review on November 22, 2006
Format: Paperback
Brainboy and the Death Master

By Tor Seidler

This story takes place it Seattle, Washington in an orphanage called Masterly Shelter. It is owned by Keith Masterly. And it also takes place in Paradise Labs, which is in an unknown location. The main character lives in many other odd locations as well. Such as the basement of his friends house.

The main character is Darryl he is 11 or 12 and has no family because they all died in a fire. Now he lives at a shelter in Washington State. He has a Game Master the equivalent of a Game Boy and loves this item because it is the only memory of his family. He likes to play his Game Master when he is bored but now he is getting so good at the games that they aren't fun anymore. He gets a new roommate, Boris, he is nasty and smokes cigarettes and threatens Darryl with a switch blade. At night, he escapes from the orphanage to look for is sister, Nina, who was at the orphanage but got adopted by some one. A boy who helps out at the orphanage, BJ, goes to tell Darryl that dinner is ready and sees Boris holding a switch blade to Darryl's throat. BJ jumps on Boris and saves Darryl, since then, they were best friends .

The problem in the story is Darryl is so smart he gets adopted by Keith Masterly and is forced to work on a project that makes you younger. The kids are given pills that make them emotionless so they will work better. When he is working he meets a girl named Nina, Boris's sister, they realize that they should stop taking the pills so they will think clearly again. Darryl figures out the formula that makes you younger, so Keith Masterly doesn't need them any more.

My favorite part in this book was when BJ and Boris sneak up to the helipad and put a tracer on the helicopter.
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