The Great Ghost Hoax by Emily Ecton, illustrated by David Mottram. Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2021. 9781534479913
Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 3
What did you like about the book? A humorous second adventure with the pets we came to love in The Great Pet Heist. Bored and ready for another case, Butterbean, Oscar, Walt, Marco and Polo try to catch the ghost who haunts the rental apartment of Mrs. Third Floor. They are investigating the mysterious happenings when they encounter an unexpected turn and end up working to save Mrs. Third Floor from some nefarious ghost hunters. As usual, hijinks ensue as the group attempts to solve this mystery. Packed with quips and some bathroom humor the story engages young readers as this band of would-be detectives explores their apartment building. As if a dog, cat, bird, and two rats are not enough; more unusual animals add to the plot and humor of the story. Each character’s own distinct personality makes this a page turner for younger readers. Using whimsical pencil illustrations and a large font, this book’s insight into animal behavior is sure to capture the imagination of readers and tickle their funny bones.
Anything you didn’t like about it? The plot was entertaining yet simply written. Readers will be able to deduce much of the plot. Not a negative, but it should be noted that there is a bit of bathroom humor in the story.
To whom would you recommend this book? Readers, in grades 3 and up, who enjoy animal fiction books with humor would like this title. Readers who enjoyed Zoobreak by Korman and similar titles would like this as well.
Who should buy this book? This would be a good purchase for upper elementary or public libraries that cannot get enough books with animal hijinks.
Where would you shelve it ? Fiction; humor if you genre-fy
Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? I feel that this title would reside near the middle of the “to read” pile.
Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Elena Schuck, Nathaniel H. Wixon School Library, Dennis, Massachusetts
Date of review: October 27, 2021