A fun, socially conscious mystery that continues to take the series in new directions.

KAT WOLFE ON THIN ICE

From the Wolfe and Lamb Mysteries series , Vol. 3

A vacation turns into another mystery for young animal lovers–turned–amateur sleuths.

Having solved previous mysteries near her home in Dorset, England, 12-year-old Kat Wolfe is ready for a vacation across the pond. So is her overworked veterinarian mother. Together they are set to accompany Kat’s best friend, 13-year-old Harper Lamb, and her paleontologist father on a trip to New York’s Adirondack Mountains. When unexpected events, including a nor’easter, converge in this third stand-alone installment of the series, Kat and Harper find themselves parentless and snowed in for several days. At first the pair is intrigued by a recent news event—a botched heist of a diamond necklace—but when they learn that the key witness, Riley, is not only a girl Kat met at a rest stop en route to the Adirondacks, but also has disappeared in the area, Kat and Harper set out to find her. Once again, they combine savvy computer talent, keen observation, and cleverness with animals in a lighthearted adventure with just the right amount of danger. This time the girls must also test their survival skills amid a pack of huskies, assorted wild animals, and blizzard conditions. Most notably, their sleuthing spotlights biases around the types of individuals society often overlooks. Whiteness is the default; Harper’s late mother was Cuban.

A fun, socially conscious mystery that continues to take the series in new directions. (Mystery. 9-12)

Pub Date: Jan. 5, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-374-30964-0

Page Count: 272

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: Oct. 12, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2020

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A-mew-sing fare for readers who sometimes feel like fraidycats themselves.

SCAREDY CAT

Two shelter cats take on a mysterious puss with weird powers who is terrorizing the feline community.

Hardly have timorous (and aptly named) Poop and her sophisticated buddy, Pasha, been brought home by their new “human beans” for a two-week trial than they are accosted by fiery-eyed Scaredy Cat, utterly trashing the kitchen with a click of his claws and, hissing that he’s in charge of the neighborhood, threatening that if they don’t act like proper cats—disdaining ordinary cat food and any summons (they are not dogs, after all), clawing the furniture instead of the scratching post, and showing like “cattitude”—it’ll be back to the shelter for them. Will Poop and Pasha prove to be fraidycats or flee to the cowed clowder of homeless cats hiding from the bully in the nearby woods? Nope, they are made of sterner stuff and resolutely set out to enlist feline allies in a “quest for life, liberty, and the pursuit of purrs!” Cast into a gazillion very short chapters related by furry narrators Poop and Pasha, who are helpfully depicted in portrait vignettes by Herzog at each chapter’s head, the ensuing adventures test the defiant kitties’ courage (and, in some cases, attention spans) on the way to a spooky but poignant climax set, appropriately enough as it happens, in a pet graveyard.

A-mew-sing fare for readers who sometimes feel like fraidycats themselves. (Adventure. 9-11)

Pub Date: March 15, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-316-49443-4

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Jimmy Patterson/Little, Brown

Review Posted Online: March 3, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2021

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A smart, fresh take on an old favorite makes for a terrific series kickoff

THE GREAT SHELBY HOLMES

From the Shelby Holmes series , Vol. 1

A modern Sherlock Holmes retelling brings an 11-year-old black John Watson into the sphere of know-it-all 9-year-old white detective Shelby Holmes.

John's an Army brat who's lived in four states already. Now, with his parents' divorce still fresh, the boy who's lived only on military bases must explore the wilds of Harlem. His new life in 221A Baker St. begins inauspiciously, as before he's even finished moving in, his frizzy-haired neighbor blows something up: "BOOM!" But John's great at making friends, and Shelby certainly seems like an interesting kid to know. Oddly loquacious, brusque, and extremely observant, Shelby's locally famous for solving mysteries. John’s swept up in her detecting when a wealthy, brown-skinned classmate enlists their help in the mysterious disappearance of her beloved show dog, Daisy. Whatever could have happened to the prizewinning Cavalier King Charles spaniel? Has she been swiped by a jealous competitor? Has Daisy’s trainer—mysteriously come into enough money to take a secret weekend in Cozumel—been placing bets against his own dog? Brisk pacing, likable characters, a few silly Holmes jokes ("I'm Petunia Cumberbatch," says Shelby while undercover), and a diverse neighborhood, carefully and realistically described by John, are ingredients for success.

A smart, fresh take on an old favorite makes for a terrific series kickoff . (Mystery. 9-11)

Pub Date: Sept. 6, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-68119-051-8

Page Count: 240

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Review Posted Online: June 22, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2016

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