A Dog-Friendly Town

Farrar. Aug. 2020. 384p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780374306441.
Gr 3-7–Cameron takes readers into the world of dogs, their owners, Hollywood drama, and a group of amateur sleuths on summer vacation. Epic, Rondo, and Elvis live in the Perro del Mar, their parents’ popular dog-friendly bed-and-breakfast in Carmelito, CA—also known as “America’s #1 Dog-Friendly Town.” Everyone is abuzz when a few famous dogs descend upon their little town for the 10th Annual Dog Elegance Award Ceremony and Carmelito’s Annual Puppy Picnic. However, when one of the dogs’ diamond collars goes missing, the siblings find themselves in the middle of a whodunit. With Hollywood dog gossip bloggers lurking at every turn, a rival dog bed-and-breakfast, and a few curious characters, the siblings must act fast before the culprit gets away with it. This book has it all: a captivating plot, an exciting mystery, and likeable characters. There’s a lot of players and moving parts, but readers will stay engaged and have no trouble following along. Cameron mixes things up by inserting gossip blog posts between chapters, which expands perspective beyond the narrator, Epic. There are character illustrations in the opening pages, and readers will enjoy putting faces to names.
VERDICT A highly enjoyable mystery for upper elementary. A recommended purchase.

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