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Killer Pizza Paperback – May 24, 2011

4.1 out of 5 stars 54 customer reviews
Book 1 of 3 in the Killer Pizza Series

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 5–8—Taylor delivers some fun, frightful fare in this high-concept debut novel. Fourteen-year-old Toby Magill, a closeted Food Network junkie, gets a summer job flipping dough at Killer Pizza. Hoping to learn some cooking skills, Toby is optimistic about his new position, and he instantly bonds with his two coworkers. However, the teens soon discover that the establishment is actually a front for a secret monster-hunting organization, and they are the newest recruits. Their focus shifts from making pizza to weapons training and stakeouts as they try to uncover the leader of a pack of grotesque monsters that can transform into human shape and are preying on innocent people. Clearly, this is not the job for which Toby applied. Always the underdog, he has to muster up the courage to take on these frightening creatures. The descriptions are creepy, but never over-the-edge gory. The author's screenwriting background is evident in the plotting of the nonstop action sequences that lead up to the satisfying conclusion. A delectable choice for horror fans as well as reluctant readers.—Kimberly Garnick Giarratano, Rockaway Township Public Library, NJ END --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

“Taylor keeps the action coming at a brisk pace…a fun diversion.” ―Publishers Weekly

“A delectable choice for horror fans as well as reluctant readers.” ―School Library Journal

“A monster is roaming the nights in Hidden Hills, Ohio. But why worry about monsters when you can sink your teeth into a Killer Pizza? Greg Taylor serves up a hot slice of horror that I couldn't put down!” ―R. L. Stine

“This much-needed book definitely fills a gap in horror stories for young readers left by the end of the Goosebumps series.” ―VOYA

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 - 14 years
  • Grade Level: 5 - 9
  • Lexile Measure: 770 (What's this?)
  • Series: Killer Pizza
  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Square Fish; Reprint edition (May 24, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312674856
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312674854
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 1 x 7.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #210,359 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By John Williamson TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 28, 2009
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
The title alone on Greg Taylor's new novel Killer Pizza was enough to raise my interest, then I almost passed on it. Now I'm glad that I got it. It's a book that's really geared for young adults, and must admit that it's as darkly engaging as any book by R.L Stine.

Really got it for my son, who's in his early teens. The story revolves around 14 year old Toby, who finds himself working at his town's new Pizza parlor along with his co-workers Strobe and Annabel. But Toby soon discovers that the pizzeria is a front for a clandestine monster-hunting organization. Before long they find themselves some dangerous nocturnal monsters that are a combination between vampire, werewolf and gargoyle... and these creatures are intelligent, too.

This is a fine good versus evil tale, and is fast paced, yet entertaining. Author Greg Taylor does a good job describing the scenes, and all in all, it's a good read, especially for the 12- or 13-year-old who doesn't suffer from nightmares. The vocabulary is right in line for the average junior high level reader, though some may consider the content to be a bit more violent and intense than they would expect. But for a mature early teen, it's a great read.

My son and I both give this one a 5-star rating, and will be looking for Greg Taylor's next book. Highly recommended.
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I don't get the School Library Journal's reference to this book as "high concept". It is a poorly stitched together amalgam of every ya thriller out there, without any life of its own.
You've got a bright popular girl, a cool athlete, and a sort-of-nerdy slightly neurotic hero thrown together. Because they are so good at working together to open some pizza place they are inducted into a super-secret monster hunting society for which the pizza parlor is a front. Then you get werewolf/vampires, martial arts training, over-the-top acrobatic fight scenes, and so on. There's no back story, no diversions, no development of anything. Just a pretty cartoonish headlong rush to the final confrontation between pizza employees and generic monsters.
All of that would be fine if you had any decent dialogue, any interesting characters, any twists or turns or novelty, or any attempt at anything other than just-barely-serviceable writing.
I think ya fantasy/adventure/thrillers are often better than adult escapist fiction because the ya authors try harder, take more chances, and show a lot more imagination. But sometimes you get a book like this, where an author just writes a mediocre adult thriller and then dumbs it down and shortens it for a ya audience.
So, with so many good ya titles out there, I just don't see myself placing an order for this one.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Killer Pizza by Greg Taylor follows Toby a boy who is thrilled to start his new job at Killer Pizza. He starts work with his co-workers Strobe and Anabelle and everything is going well when his boss Harvey tells them that the pizza shop is a front for an organization that hunts and kills monsters to keep the human population safe. Toby and his friends start their training while also dealing with an infestation of Gruttatas, a disgusting monster that bites and transforms humans.

This is a great horror novel with heart. Toby is a very likeable hero and the other two in his monster fighting team are likeable. The monsters are a combination of vampire and werewolf and nicely terrifying. The fight scenes are the best part of the book and action packed with crossbows and sharp nails and teeth. I read this book quickly and think that teen boys will really enjoy it.

Appropriateness: Aside from a little lying to his parents (and really would you tell your parents you were working for a top secret monster killing organization) there isn't any adult content or bad behavior in the book. Toby is a nice kid who has good values, respects his parents and works hard. There is no romance at all to turn off those who don't like romance. I would recommend this book to teens 11+ and this will be one of my top recommends for teen boys. The lexile is 770 putting it at a fifth grade reading level.
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Format: Hardcover
Toby thought he was getting a summer job and that it might conveniently give him some needed experience for his future dream job as a chef in his own restaurant. Little did he know what applying at and scoring a job at Killer Pizza would mean.

Two other teens, Annabel and Strobe, start training at Killer Pizza at the same time as Toby. A fourth teen, named Doug, seems like a reluctant future employee when he arrives to join their team. The training is intense as the four teens learn recipes, oven skills, and the general rules involved in working for the popular pizza joint. They seem like a pretty good team except for Doug. He just doesn't seem that into it.

During the early weeks at Killer Pizza, Toby gets home pretty beat, and when some spectacular nightmares start interrupting his sleep, he's unnerved. The dreams seem so real, and the glimpses of a terrifying monster he experiences soon take on a meaning he never imagined possible.

The innocent summer job turns out to be a cover operation for a group of monster hunters. Disinterested Doug turns out to be Harvey, the head of the whole operation. Toby, Annabel, and Strobe are being recruited as MCO's - Monster Combat Officers. Their employment at Killer Pizza has been a test to determine their suitability as candidates for the MCO Academy.

As soon as their participation begins, they learn that monsters really do exist. In fact, their small town may be infested with hideous monsters known as guttata. Disguised as humans, these guttata are attacking and infecting innocent citizens with the hope of taking over the place.

What follows is a fabulous monster hunt complete with crossbows, explosive devices, deadly talons and fangs, and intense battle scenes.
Read more ›
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