Three cases and lunch! What more could you need? Happily, Volume 2, The President’s Mane Is Missing, publishes simultaneously

INSPECTOR FLYTRAP

From the Inspector Flytrap series , Vol. 1

Inspector Flytrap is here to solve your “BIG DEAL” mysteries…foolishness in every case file guaranteed.

Inspector Flytrap may be a Venus flytrap, but the carnivorous plant is also trying to become the greatest private detective ever grown. Inspector Flytrap lives in a pot and can leave the office only with the help of assistant Nina the Goat, always hungry and frequently unimpressed. She puts the inspector’s pot on a skateboard and pushes it around town. Calls come from many of the town’s animal denizens, but the inspector spurns small cases. Lulu Emu’s request for assistance at the art museum seems important enough to put the inspector on the case—but contrary Nina’s fondness for going the wrong way down busy, one-way streets makes for a hair-raising start. At the museum, Lulu takes them to the Top Secret Art Lab, where they are shown the only flower painting Leonardo da Vinci ever painted: there’s a mysterious yellow glob stuck to the masterwork. Nina tastes it. And after a few simple questions, the intrepid plant detective solves the explosive (and slightly gross) case. Angleberger and Bell team up for a goofy, easy chapter-book series kickoff. The cases (in addition to the Leonardo enigma, there’s a case involving a fetid cookie factory and an AWOL rose) are full of silly characters (and solved with silly solutions), and Bell’s ample cartoon line drawings pair perfectly.

Three cases and lunch! What more could you need? Happily, Volume 2, The President’s Mane Is Missing, publishes simultaneously . (Humor. 6-9)

Pub Date: Aug. 2, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4197-0948-7

Page Count: 112

Publisher: Amulet/Abrams

Review Posted Online: May 4, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2016

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THE FENWAY FOUL-UP

BALLPARK MYSTERIES, #1

From the Ballpark Mysteries series , Vol. 1

A new series for emerging chapter-book readers combines the allure of baseball parks with the challenge of solving a mystery. Mike and Kate have tickets to a Red Sox game and an all-access pass to the park, courtesy of Kate's mom, a sportswriter. The pass comes in handy when it's reported that star player Big D's lucky bat has been stolen, as it allows them to help find the thief. Historical details about Fenway Park, including the secret code found on the manual scoreboard, a look at Wally the mascot and a peek into the gift shop, will keep the young baseball fan reading, even when the actual mystery of the missing bat falls a little flat. Writing mysteries for very young readers is a challenge—the puzzle has to be easy enough to solve while sustaining readers' interest. This slight adventure is more baseball-park travel pamphlet than mystery, a vehicle for providing interesting details about one of the hallowed halls of baseball. Not a homerun, but certainly a double for the young enthusiast. On deck? The Pinstripe Ghost, also out on Feb. 22, 2011. (historical notes) (Mystery. 6-9)

 

 

Pub Date: Feb. 22, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-375-86703-3

Page Count: 112

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: Dec. 30, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2011

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Questioneers fans will not be disappointed; new fans will find this outing a timely introduction to the series.

SOFIA VALDEZ AND THE VANISHING VOTE

From the Questioneers series

The Questioneers are back for a new early chapter book, this one featuring Sofia Valdez, of Sofia Valdez, Future Prez (2019) fame.

Sofia and her friends from Miss Greer’s second grade class are back for another adventure. This time around, an election to select the new class pet offers lots of what Miss Greer likes to call Learning Experiences. Young civic activist Sofia is put in charge of managing the election, which pits candidates backed by two of her best friends against one another. Meanwhile, her cousin Marisella grapples with a pet problem of her own. Between friends and family, the election pulls Sofia in all directions, and she realizes that overseeing a fair election that runs smoothly proves to be a real challenge. Fortunately, she has sage advice from Abuelo and help from the local library to guide her. The short chapters and ample illustrations make for an accessible and entertaining early chapter book, full of fun and, yes, learning experiences. Extensive backmatter includes information on the importance of a free press, the true historical events behind Abuelo’s stories, and more information on how the voting process in the United States works. Sofia and her family have brown skin and are of Mexican heritage; her friends are diverse; and Miss Greer presents White. Marisella uses a wheelchair.

Questioneers fans will not be disappointed; new fans will find this outing a timely introduction to the series. (Fiction. 6-9)

Pub Date: Oct. 6, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-4197-4350-4

Page Count: 160

Publisher: Amulet/Abrams

Review Posted Online: Aug. 18, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2020

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