A budding engineer proves to her younger brother that leprechauns are real.
In her “leprechaun trap laboratory,” Claire sets about making a contraption that will give skeptical Sam hard evidence: a laundry basket and forked stick with “something shiny” as bait. Readers paying attention will spy a little figure in a green suit peeking through the window, so it’s no surprise when the siblings find a note from Finn instead of the leprechaun himself. Claire’s next, Rube Goldberg–esque trap is just as unsuccessful. But the third works: Some mirrors, invisible wire, a net, and a pot of gold coins catch Finn, but he uses his magic to escape, leaving them with a triple rainbow for a reward while taking the coins Claire somehow had on hand. Finally believing, Sam makes a list of a few other mythical beasts he’d like to try trapping. The final two pages offer readers some suggested supplies and advice for sketching and building their own traps (but no specific directions). Lazar introduces readers to some challenging vocabulary (“inescapable,” “kaput,” “nab,” “vamoosed”), but Claire doesn’t always sound like the kid she is: “Oh, zip! He tripped the trap but gave us the slip!” In To’s shiny, cartoon illustrations, all three characters are white with red hair; Claire wears glasses, and the pockets of her jumper are filled with tools.
May trigger a flurry of STEM activity for the March holiday but not much beyond that. (Picture book. 4-8)