How does a hippo go missing? Fabio and Gilbert are on the case!
Bright pink Fabio is the world’s greatest flamingo detective, and his favorite place for a pink lemonade, taken in the company of his giraffe sidekick, Gilbert, is the Hotel Royale on the shores of Lake Laloozee. But all is not well there. Smith, the vulture who runs the place with his sister, chef Penelope, is none too keen on her daughter’s ideas to bring in more customers: Violet wants to have a talent contest. When head contest judge Daphne, a rhino who goes by “the General,” catches cold, Fabio takes her place…and then contestant Julia the hippo vanishes—from the stage. Was it a rival contestant? A crooked judge? Or is the disappearance connected to the strange events at the Gold Cup athletic competition, where many of the contestants seemed strangely sleepy? No need to fear with dapper, superobservant Fabio investigating. With this caper, James, British author of the Adventures of Pug chapter books, kicks off a new series of easy-reading mysteries peopled with jungle animals. Fox’s cartoons are offset by an arresting design that incorporates copious applications of bright pink and electric green. Characterization is broad: Fabio is quite self-assured and Gilbert, gangly and bumbling.
Young sleuths will enjoy the easy mystery and the cheeky illustrations. More cases on the way! (Fantasy/mystery. 6-10)