A satisfying, exciting, and fitting finale to a memorable mouse saga.

RETURN OF THE FORGOTTEN

From the Mouseheart Trilogy series , Vol. 3

In this final volume of the Mouseheart Trilogy, warrior mouse Hopper seeks his estranged brother while a new traitor threatens the peace of underground Atlantia.

Since defeating the feral cats, Hopper and his rat friends, Zucker and Firren, have rebuilt Atlantia in Brooklyn’s subway tunnels into a visionary rodent colony. Hopper’s the proud godfather of Zucker and Firren’s daughter, Hope, and his sister, Pinkie, ruler of the Mus, has mellowed. However, his embittered, younger brother, Pup, avowed enemy of Atlantia, has vanished. Unaware that Pup regrets his past behavior and seeks forgiveness, Hopper and Pinkie organize a search party. Meanwhile, Pup’s captured by Devon, one of Pinkie’s elite guards. Consumed with a thirst for vengeance against Firren for past deeds, Devon kidnaps Hope and threatens to use her and Pup to punish Firren. When Pup and Hope discover Devon’s dark plan, they escape and journey aboveground for help from Hopper’s old pals. As Hopper and his friends rally, Pup and Pinkie make their way across the East River to confront Devon. While Volume 3 focuses on Pup’s redemption and Devon’s despicable deeds, the return of familiar characters, added Mus back story, atmospheric illustrations, and romance for Hopper should delight readers.

A satisfying, exciting, and fitting finale to a memorable mouse saga. (Animal fantasy. 8-12)

Pub Date: Oct. 20, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-4814-2092-1

Page Count: 320

Publisher: McElderry

Review Posted Online: July 27, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2015

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Is this the end? Well, no…the series will stagger on through at least one more scheduled sequel.

CAPTAIN UNDERPANTS AND THE TERRIFYING RETURN OF TIPPY TINKLETROUSERS

From the Captain Underpants series , Vol. 9

Sure signs that the creative wells are running dry at last, the Captain’s ninth, overstuffed outing both recycles a villain (see Book 4) and offers trendy anti-bullying wish fulfillment.

Not that there aren’t pranks and envelope-pushing quips aplenty. To start, in an alternate ending to the previous episode, Principal Krupp ends up in prison (“…a lot like being a student at Jerome Horwitz Elementary School, except that the prison had better funding”). There, he witnesses fellow inmate Tippy Tinkletrousers (aka Professor Poopypants) escape in a giant Robo-Suit (later reduced to time-traveling trousers). The villain sets off after George and Harold, who are in juvie (“not much different from our old school…except that they have library books here.”). Cut to five years previous, in a prequel to the whole series. George and Harold link up in kindergarten to reduce a quartet of vicious bullies to giggling insanity with a relentless series of pranks involving shaving cream, spiders, effeminate spoof text messages and friendship bracelets. Pilkey tucks both topical jokes and bathroom humor into the cartoon art, and ups the narrative’s lexical ante with terms like “pharmaceuticals” and “theatrical flair.” Unfortunately, the bullies’ sad fates force Krupp to resign, so he’s not around to save the Earth from being destroyed later on by Talking Toilets and other invaders…

Is this the end? Well, no…the series will stagger on through at least one more scheduled sequel. (Fantasy. 10-12)

Pub Date: Aug. 28, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-545-17534-0

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: June 20, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2012

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Rich, naturalistic details will delight lovers of marine life.

ODDER

A Monterey Bay sea otter comes of age.

Odder’s mom told her to stay away from sharks, humans, and anything else she didn’t understand, but after saving her friend Kairi from a shark attack, she encounters all three. Injured herself during the rescue, Odder ends up recuperating at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, or Highwater as the otters call it, where she once lived as a young orphaned pup. Last time, the humans helped her reintegrate into the wild, but because of her injuries this time the outcome might be different. Soon Kairi is there too, stricken with “the shaking sickness” and having lost her newborn pup. Now Kairi is fostering a new pup, and soon one is introduced to an initially reluctant Odder in hopes that she will help raise it so it can return to the wild. The free verse effortlessly weaves in scientific information, giving Odder a voice without overly anthropomorphizing any of the animals. The natural appeal of sea otters will draw readers in, but the book doesn’t shy away from real-world threats such as predators, disease, and pollution. Loosely based on the stories of real sea otters rehabilitated at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, this novel will give readers lots to talk about, but uneven pacing and a rushed ending may leave some unsatisfied. Charming black-and-white spot art captures the world and life of the sea.

Rich, naturalistic details will delight lovers of marine life. (glossary, author’s note, bibliography, resources) (Verse novel. 8-12)

Pub Date: Sept. 20, 2022

ISBN: 978-1-250-14742-4

Page Count: 288

Publisher: Feiwel & Friends

Review Posted Online: Aug. 31, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2022

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