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Posts Tagged ‘Satire’

Fabio the World’s Greatest Flamingo Detective and Mystery on the Ostrich Express by Laura James, illus. Emily Fox

May 26, 2019 Comments off

fabioFabio the World’s Greatest Flamingo Detective and Mystery on the Ostrich Express by Laura James, illus. Emily Fox. Pub. Bloomsbury, 2019.

While traveling on the Ostrich Express from Laloozee to the Coral Coast, Fabio the World’s greatest Flamingo detective and his sidekick Gilbert the Giraffe discover a ruthlessly planned crime.

Zazie the Fox is wearing the famous Laloozee Ruby around her neck and when it is stolen I thought aye aye, this is a fit up. Am I right?

Well known thief Janice the Claw is on the scene with her band of Hyenas but all is not as it seems. Fabio with his Hercule Poirot like perceptions is nobody’s fool.

Nice tongue in cheek stuff from Laura James but it is Emily Fox’s superb illustrations that enhance the mystery and the fun of this¬† novel for newly confident readers. Older readers will love the fun.

The first novel The Mystery of the Missing Hippo is also reviewed on this blog

Dave Pigeon (Royal Coo) by Swapna Haddon, illus. Sheena Dempsey.

March 26, 2019 Comments off

royal cooDave Pigeon (Royal Coo) by Swapna Haddon, illus. Sheena Dempsey. Pub. Faber&Faber, 2019.

This title and its three prequels are a great laugh and easy to read for reluctant primary and intermediate school readers. They are fun, are not stupid and have a fair degree social satire.

Dave pigeon is a bit of a lad, has some dumb ideas, gets into a lot of trouble but is kept in line by his best friend Skipper who pens these books.

This time there is a new Royal baby and the Peoples Palace is full of celebratory goodies which pigeons love. Dave and Skipper are off to the Palace to get their share when they discover that the Royal pigeon is a dead ringer for Dave.

Royal pigeon wants a day or so to fly among the commoners and Dave can have a new role in the Palace, so they swap. But there are enemies around and the penalty for being caught could land Dave and Skipper in jail.

See how they get on and see how the Royal pigeon gets on amongst the commoners.

Excellent illustrations once again from Sheena Dempsey. She manages to make even Dave look like Royalty.

The Wonderful Whippet of Winifred Weatherwax by Philippa Stasiuk.

February 22, 2019 Comments off

whippetThe Wonderful Whippet of Winifred Weatherwax by Philippa Stasiuk. Pub. Tivoli Press, 2018.

I laughed all the way through this sumptuously written story about Kennel Clubs, best in Show dog competitions and the dog owners. I think Philippa Stasiuk is taking the water and she does it superbly well.

Heroine is Freddy, a 15 year old girl, real name Winifred Weatherwax. Freddy’s mother buys a whippet called Shumba. It has something unusual about it which Freddy recognises immediately even though she has no knowledge of dog breeding.

It turns out Shumba is of mysterious pedigree which the breeder is hiding from the rest of the dog world. Freddy brings the best out in the dog and it wins it’s first show in unprecedented fashion. Suddenly the best in Show world looks up determined to solve the mystery of this familiar first time winner.

Then champion dogs start to go missing and Shumba’s fortunes rise. Who is behind the missing dogs and will Shumba be next? Freddy and her friend Eli investigate.

Wonderful satire of the dog world and of New York social whirl. Freddy utters at one stage “I watched a woman spoon-feed her dog an organic, grass-fed lamb smoothie” and of New York society she describes Upper East Side tenants of having two things – a doorman and a therapist.

The writing is lofty, tightly written and hugely funny.

Savour this one.

For capable intermediate  and High school students. Adults will get a laugh out of it too.