THE PLUCKER by Anna Starobinets


From the "Beastly Crimes" series, volume 4
by ; illustrated by ; translated by
Age Range: 8 - 14
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Come to the Far Woods for a tale of beastly crimes and detection in this Russian import.

Chief Badger has had to make the wrenching decision to suspend his Assistant Chief Badger—and adoptive son—Badgercat (an actual cat). Badgercat is under suspicion of being the Plucker, a villain who is plucking seemingly random birds in the Far Woods and burning their feathers. Super Bat, a representative of Madame Weasel, is 100% certain Badgercat is the perp. Chief Badger would like to use his badger logic and look for clues (and, hopefully, clear his son). Meanwhile, with the aid of his new sketchy friend Ratty, Badgercat is working to clear his name with an investigation of his own. Who could be pulling the feathers off the avian denizens of the wood? Arctic the fox? Sneaky Sal the lizard? One of the birds…or someone higher up? And what does the poetry of Robert Forest have to do with it? Starobinets’ fourth Beastly Crimes book is a clever whodunit featuring believable animal characters in a convincing, recognizable society. There are perhaps one (or two) too many red herrings, but a satisfying conclusion will please fans. This tale can stand alone, but all are much more enjoyable starting from the beginning. A few full-color illustrations from Muravski add to the appeal.

Mystery fans (around the world) should rejoice. (Mystery. 8-14)

Pub Date: Oct. 16th, 2019
ISBN: 978-0-4868-2953-1
Page count: 176pp
Publisher: Dover
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2019