Reviews for to Z Mysteries - Books A-c


Booklist Monthly Selections - # 1 May 2003
Gr. 2-4. When the skeleton in the school nurse's office disappears, Dink and his friends, Josh and Ruth Rose, try to find the missing bones. At first their only clue is an adult's footprint. Does that mean that one of the teachers at Green Lawn Elementary School is the guilty one? Why does a key suddenly appear with a coded note? The latest in the Stepping Stone easy-to-read A to Z Mysteries series is set in a happy school where the principal, the janitor, the teachers, and the kids are drawn into solving the mystery together. The solution is a bit of a letdown, but Gurney's black-and-white illustrations extend the fun of sleuthing at school, and new readers will enjoy the cozy story, which has just a touch of the shivers. ((Reviewed May 1, 2003)) Copyright 2003 Booklist Reviews

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2004 Fall
Umpire Pete confesses to stealing some autographed baseballs, but young sleuths Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose think he's trying to protect someone. Armchair detectives hoping to match wits with the investigating trio will be disappointed that the crime is committed by an out-of-left-field character. The prose is fast paced but pedestrian. Serviceable black-and-white images appear throughout. Copyright 2004 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2003 Spring
In [cf2]Quicksand[cf1], friends Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose investigate the theft of a plastic bank being used to collect charitable contributions. In [cf2]Racehorse[cf1], they try to figure out why a champion horse unexpectedly loses a race. The latter story features a stronger plot and more deductive reasoning than most books in this mildly entertaining series. Benign black-and-white illustrations are scattered throughout. [Review covers these A to Z Mysteries titles: [cf2]The Quicksand Question[cf1] and [cf2]The Runaway Racehorse[cf1].] Copyright 2003 Horn Book Guide Reviews

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2002 Fall
After a baby panda is snatched from the local zoo, Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose track down the bear and help nab its kidnapper. This latest mystery sticks to the seriesÆ formula, introducing some possible suspects and a few red herrings before nudging the sleuths toward the real culprit. Black-and-white illustrations accompany each chapter. Copyright 2002 Horn Book Guide Reviews

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2005 Fall
The last four books in this popular series continue the adventures of amateur detectives--and best friends--Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose. There is no great character development or plotting but enough suspense to keep children reading. The books are illustrated with black-and-white drawings. [Review covers these A to Z Mysteries titles: [cf2]The White Wolf[cf1], [cf2]The X'ed-Out X-ray[cf1], [cf2]The Yellow Yacht[cf1], and [cf2]The Zombie Zone[cf1].] Copyright 2005 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2001 Fall
When a thief swipes a lottery ticket worth seven million dollars, Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose brave a snowstorm to round up clues (and dodge red herrings) before finally nabbing the criminal. The lightweight mystery is typical of the series and won't disappoint young detective-fiction buffs. Black-and-white illustrations accompany the text. Copyright 2001 Horn Book Guide Reviews

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2005 Spring
Investigative trio Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose wonder if an enigmatic local visitor, Dr. A. Cula, could be a vampire. Illustrated with modest art, this formulaic mystery depends on the absurd likelihood that "Dr. Cula" (actually an actor on vacation) and several townspeople he's never met before would suddenly unite in a conspiracy just to play an elaborate practical joke on the kids. Copyright 2005 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2004 Spring
Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose help figure out what has become of money stolen out of an animatronic [cf2]Tyrannosaurus rex[cf1]. The detective trio wind up stuck inside the dinosaur but use their intelligence to get back out. It's formulaic, but the formula still works and will help encourage new readers to keep turning the pages until the mystery is solved. Copyright 2004 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2002 Spring
In two mild mysteries, best friends Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose investigate a pair of thefts. A gold nugget that Josh finds in Montana is later stolen. In New York, the kids track down the culprit stealing valuable paintings from an apartment building. The characters are generic and the plots bland, but fans will enjoy these additions to the series. [Review covers these A to Z Mysteries titles: [cf2]The Ninth Nugget[cf1] and [cf2]The Orange Outlaw[cf1].] Copyright 2002 Horn Book Guide Reviews

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2000 Spring
In a plot overly familiar to every fan of [cf2]Scooby-Doo[cf1], three kids unmask a ghost hoax to derail a fraudulent real estate deal. Followers of this mystery series will welcome back sleuths Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose, as well as other inhabitants of Green Lawn, but won't find any new contributions to the genre. Pencil sketches illustrate the chapter book.Copyright 2000 Horn Book Guide Reviews

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2003 Fall
When the school skeleton model vanishes from the nurse's office, sleuth friends Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose follow clues (a footprint, a key) to track it down. Although tamer than the usual A to Z fare (the culprit is the principal, having an April Fools' Day joke), the formulaic series will still appeal to fans. Benign black-and-white illustrations break up the short, quick chapters. Copyright 2003 Horn Book Guide Reviews

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2000 Fall
Fast-paced, formulaic fare, the [cf2]I[cf1] and [cf2]J[cf1] installments in Roy's alphabetic series find Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose uncovering a counterfeiter's stash on Squaw Island and nabbing a jewel thief in New York City. One-dimensional characters and obvious red herrings (the criminal is never the suspected friend or relative) won't deter undemanding readers in search of a quick mystery fix. Pencil drawings accompany the chapter books. Copyright 2000 Horn Book Guide Reviews

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School Library Journal Reviews 2004 October
Gr 1-3-The first of Ron Roy's easy-reader mysteries-The Absent Author, The Bald Bandit, and The Canary Caper (Random)-are included here. Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose set off on adventures as they deal with a possible author kidnapping, a devious bank robber, and a pet-snatching conspiracy. David Pittu reads with energy, individualizing each character. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

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School Library Journal Reviews 2003 October
Gr 1-3-The first three of Ron Roy's fun easy-reader mysteries The Absent Author, The Bald Bandit (both Random, 1997), and The Canary Caper (Random, 1998) are included in this first audiobook version of the series. Thoughtful Dink, ever-hungry Josh, and loud-voiced Ruth Rose are off for high adventure as they deal with a possible author-kidnapping, a devious bank robber, and a pet-snatching conspiracy. The stories are just right for transitional readers who are not quite ready for the Boxcar Children mysteries. There are clues to follow, a few red herrings, and friendly supporting adults. The inclusion of a helpful police officer is a nice touch. Attentive listeners should be able to solve the mysteries along with the young detectives. There's enough danger here to give children a delightful shiver, but things never really get out of hand. David Pittu reads the books with energy, individualizing each character and bringing the stories to life. This is a delightful way to introduce young readers to a popular series, and would also make a good listening center in primary grade classrooms.-Teresa Bateman, Brigadoon Elementary School, Federal Way, WA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

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