Subtitle: The Ocean Kingdom (Saturday AM #1)
By: Jeyodin
Genre: FXA - Graphic novels: Manga
Published by: Quarto
Published: 31 May 2022
ISBN: 9780760376836


In Hammer, Volume 1, Stud's father has gone on another expedition, leaving him alone to fend for himself. Luckily, he can turn his bare hands into hammers.

Left on his own again, Stud gets sucked into one of his father's journals down into an ocean kingdom grappling with the murder of its king. Can Stud use his hammer hands to solve the case?

Our hero Stud is a 14-year-old boy whose father regularly abandons him on expeditions that he regularly catalogs in his own journals. Having to fend for himself, Stud isn't like most kids—he can turn his hands into hammers! Unfortunately, the kids in the village don't think it's cool and do not allow him to join their own fun adventures. Considering that his father has always advised him that friends are the most important accomplishment a person can make, what's a boy who can turn part of his body into metal to do? Go on his own adventures, of course!

When Stud stumbles upon one of his father's journals detailing his past adventures with Tara, Stud's mother; our young hero unknowingly makes a wish. Using “wishing coins,” after reading a passage about them, Stud gets sucked into the book, and it is at the location of one of his parents' adventures! While that would be weird enough, he's fallen on top of a hammerhead shark by the name of Steele, who is suspected of killing the Ocean King. Stranded in a water world and unable to breathe without special assistance, Stud's in a bit of trouble. With no way home in sight, he attempts to finally make a friend who can help him and thus chooses to aid the Mermaid Detective trying to solve the murder case. Can Stud solve this problem with his shiny hammer hands? He's going to try!

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Stud lives on the outskirts of a mining town. He lives with an adventure seeking Dad, who leaves Spud alone for longer and longer periods of time.

He is ostracized by the kids from the town’s mining families, and he yearns to fit in. He hopes to receive his powers on his birthday, but it develops shortly after. His powers are hammer fists that he learns to control - the tighter his fists when he calls them, the larger they are.

When Stud goes into his Dad’s secret room and opens his book, he is quickly caught up in the pages and transported to a world under the ocean, where he uses his powers to protect Detective Dan and the Underwater Kingdom from hideous monsters.

With wonderful illustrations and an action-packed storyline, this series will appeal to all aficionados of this genre, aged 11 - 15.

Reviewed by Rob