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From the Kudo Kids series, volume 2

by Maia Shibutani & Alex Shibutani with Michelle Schusterman ; illustrated by Yaoyao Ma Van As

Pub Date: May 4th, 2021
ISBN: 978-0-593-11376-9
Publisher: Razorbill/Penguin

While vacationing in New York, a brother and sister find themselves solving the mystery of a disappearing dress.

Andy and Mika Kudo from The Mystery of the Masked Medalist (2020) are back, and this time they’re going through transitions of their own. Sixth grader Mika struggles to find a theme for her latest photography club assignment while Andy, who is in seventh grade, worries that the two are slowly growing apart. When their parents’ work takes them to the Big Apple, the duo is eager for the weeklong vacation spent visiting their cousin Jenny. When their Aunt Kei, a fashion designer, gets overwhelmed with work, they volunteer to run a few errands in the city. However, everything snowballs into a full-blown catastrophe when her signature design disappears after going for repairs. Always hungry for a puzzle, the trio chase clues across New York landmarks to find the dress in time for their aunt’s presentation. As with the first title, text messages, lists, and lively, detailed cartoonlike illustrations make for welcome breaks in the narrative. Complications to the mystery are artfully revealed at an even pace, with the action really picking up toward the end. The result is a perfectly tied up and satisfactory ending. Andy and Mika, like the Olympic ice-dancing sibling author duo, are Japanese American.

A gratifying, fashionable mystery set amid the iconic backdrop of New York.

(Mystery. 9-12)