Books by Bruce Hale

INVASION OF THE SCORP-LIONS by Bruce Hale
CHILDREN'S
Released: Oct. 31, 2017

"More side-splitting, nose-holding heroics…in the face of a still-rising tide of monsters. (Horror. 8-10)"
Fourth-grade monster hunters Carlos and Benny face their greatest, or at least smelliest, challenge yet. Read full book review >
MUTANT MANTIS LUNCH LADIES! by Bruce Hale
CHILDREN'S
Released: March 7, 2017

"'Freakity freaking freakiness!' (to quote Carlos) on a high and gleeful level. (Horror. 8-10)"
Seasoned fourth-grade monster hunters Carlos and Benny find heaping helpings of horror in the lunchroom. Read full book review >
CLARK THE SHARK LOVES CHRISTMAS by Bruce Hale
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 20, 2016

"An amusing holiday outing for Clark the Shark fans. (Picture book. 4-8)"
Hale and Francis continue their popular series about the boisterous shark named Clark with a story about a Secret Santa gift exchange in his classroom. Read full book review >
THE CURSE OF THE WERE-HYENA by Bruce Hale
CHILDREN'S
Released: July 5, 2016

"A series kickoff with a promising mix of chills and chortles. (Light horror. 8-10)"
Monterrosa seems like an ordinary small town—until a resident is bitten by a strange-looking dog one night while taking a stroll past the graveyard. Read full book review >
DANNY AND THE DINOSAUR AND THE NEW PUPPY by Bruce Hale
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"Welcome back, Danny. Let's hear some more stories about you, your new puppy, and your big, old friend. (Early reader. 4-7)"
The venerable I Can Read! series is extending Syd Hoff's run with new books written and drawn in his familiar style. Read full book review >
BIG BAD DETECTIVE AGENCY by Bruce Hale
CHILDREN'S
Released: Jan. 27, 2015

"Funny and flip, like Saturday morning cartoons. (Fantasy/mystery. 6-9)"
Everyone knows the Big Bad Wolf is…well bad, right? Read full book review >
THICKER THAN WATER by Bruce Hale
CHILDREN'S
Released: June 24, 2014

"Joyless, juiceless, predictable. (Thriller. 11-13)"
Internal dissension, security leaks and attacks from a much larger rival add up to disaster for the orphanage-cum-spy school introduced in Playing with Fire (2013). Read full book review >
BIG BAD BABY by Bruce Hale
CHILDREN'S
Released: June 12, 2014

"Don't rest too easy. 'I'll be back!' intones our young Schwarzenegger. (Picture book. 3-5)"
We all know them—on the plane, on the train, in the car seat, after nighty-night: big bad baby. Read full book review >
MONSTERS ON THE LOOSE! by Bruce Hale
CHILDREN'S
Released: Aug. 1, 2013

"Ultimately, this average effort fails to engage and challenge like the I Spy series, but it does offer a holiday-themed activity to do when all of the candy is eaten and the costumes are put away. (Picture book. 5-8)"
A thief has stolen all the candy, and Frankenstein's monster must solve the case in order to save Halloween. Read full book review >
PLAYING WITH FIRE by Bruce Hale
CHILDREN'S
Released: June 25, 2013

"This lightweight kid-spy romp should find some eager readers. (Adventure. 11-13)"
Thirteen-year-old fosterling Max Segredo knows he's just one stop away from juvie. Luckily, that stop turns out to be the Merry Sunshine Orphanage, where the third floor is off-limits due to a secret science project, and the house rules include "No unsupervised gunplay." Read full book review >
CLARK THE SHARK by Bruce Hale
CHILDREN'S
Released: June 25, 2013

"Most especially, enthusiastic kids will appreciate the message that there is a time and a place for everything—they needn't stay cool 'round the clock. (Picture book. 4-8)"
Clark's enthusiasm for school, while admirable, is a little too much for his classmates. Read full book review >
SNORING BEAUTY by Bruce Hale
CHILDREN'S
Released: May 1, 2008

"Set this next to the similarly themed likes of Jane Yolen's Sleeping Ugly (1981) or Margie Palatini's Three Silly Billies (2005). (Picture book. 7-9)"
In this send-up of a familiar tale, a hard-of-hearing fairy manages to modify the crib-side curse so that instead of dying under the wheels of a pie wagon, the princess will turn into a sleeping dragon, who can only be awakened by a quince. Read full book review >
PRINCE OF UNDERWHERE by Bruce Hale
ADVENTURE
Released: Jan. 1, 2008

"Not quite another Chet Gecko (as yet), but still, well, a gas. (Fantasy. 9-11)"
In this mixed-format series opener, straight text switches to comic-strip panels whenever the young narrator and his twin leave their suburban neighborhood to visit an alternate Earth that features zombies, mini-T. Rex's and a general practice of wearing tighty-whities as overgarments. Read full book review >
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 2005

"Bonus: Practicing private investigators can flip the top-bound handbook over and write notes on the conveniently lined sheets—tricky for libraries, but the entertainment of the rest far outweighs this issue. (Nonfiction. 8-12)"
Any aspiring sleuth or fan of the Chet Gecko mystery series (starring the "finest lizard detective at Emerson Hicky Elementary") will appreciate the tips, activities and recipes outlined in this irreverent, illustrated handbook to detective work. Read full book review >
THE MALTED FALCON by Bruce Hale
ANIMALS
Released: April 1, 2003

"The sleuth with the smart mouth shows no signs of slowing down (or graduating, for that matter), and should continue to draw fans like fleas to a dog show. (Fiction. 10-12)"
The metaphors fly thicker than flies on ripe garbage in fourth-grade gumshoe Chet Gecko's seventh schoolyard caper. Read full book review >
THIS GUM FOR HIRE by Bruce Hale
ANIMALS
Released: Sept. 1, 2002

"From title to tailpiece—a view of Chet as the charging figure atop the 'Weisenheimer Trophy'—this eye-rolling escapade will give the redoubtable reptile's growing legion of fans yet more reason to cheer and chortle. (Fiction. 8-11)"
Fourth-grade gumshoe Chet Gecko checks in for his sixth pun-ishing caper. Read full book review >
ANIMALS
Released: April 1, 2001

Green-tailed gumshoe Chet Gecko's outsized appetite really gets him into hot water in his latest caper. Read full book review >
THE HAMSTER OF THE BASKERVILLES by Bruce Hale
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 1, 2001

"Clever, good fun. (Fiction. 9-11)"
For a box of jelly doughnuts and two Get-Out-of-Detention-Free cards, fourth-grade gumshoe Chet Gecko takes on his most baffling case yet: someone—or something—is trashing the classrooms of Emerson Hicky Elementary, leaving huge footprints, claw marks on the walls, and an aroma of peanut butter. Read full book review >
THE MYSTERY OF MR. NICE by Bruce Hale
ANIMALS
Released: Aug. 1, 2000

"Hold on to your fedoras: this gecko's going places. (Fiction. 8-10)"
Green-scaled gumshoe Chet Gecko hits his stride in this hard-boiled follow-up to The Chameleon Wore Chartreuse (p. 475). Read full book review >
THE CHAMELEON WORE CHARTREUSE by Bruce Hale
FICTION
Released: April 1, 2000

"Here's a worthy successor to Cathy Stefanec-Ogren's Sly, P.I., (not reviewed), and a host of other scaled, furred or feathered sleuths. (Mail and on-line promos, author website, gecko costume available) (Fiction. 911)"
Meet Chet Gecko, fourth grade gumshoe: a private eye with a nose for trouble, a taste for stinkbug pie, and a detachable tail—all of which come into play in this hardboiled series kickoff. Read full book review >