Sunday, 18 June 2017

Gecko Press produce excellent books for younger readers, and they have a knack for finding those quirky tales that will make you smile and have children laughing, commiserating and cheering for their favourite story friends. An early chapter book series, with short chapters and plenty of pictures dotted throughout, is 'Detective Gordon', written by Ulf Nilsson and illustrated by Gitte Spee. The First Case introduces you to Detective Gordon, an old toad (he’s 19!) – the police chief of the forest. When Squirrel discovers that 204 of his 15,704 nuts have been stolen he is understandably upset and rushes through the forest to report the crime to the famous detective, insisting that his missing nuts must be found. Detective Gordon stands vigil at the scene of the crime, and, when a young mouse flits away with another nut, he makes to pursue her. Unfortunately, he’s frozen and stuck under a mound of snow. The young mouse digs him out, and then she is promptly taken to the police station, which is warm and snug, with a comfortable bed and plenty of cakes (Gordon has a penchant for a nice cup of tea and cake for every meal and between times too, and he sometimes (but don’t tell anyone) nods off). When the detective discovers the mouse has no name, no home and only stole the one nut due to extreme hunger, he takes pity on her, promptly names her Buffy and feeds and homes his new assistant. And then it's time to solve the crime! Squirrel’s becoming further agitated by his missing nuts and wants the criminals caught, but who is it? With snow falling and the tracks being covered, can the Chief and his new assistant catch the culprits? A lively and charming story with plenty of cake and lots of heart. There are three 'Detective Gordon' books, so far, to be enjoyed.



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