The Cryptid Keeper

Farrar. (Cryptid Duology: Bk. 2). Aug. 2019. 320p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780374305567.
Gr 5-7–In this sequel to The Cryptid Catcher, globe-trotting 13-year-old Clivo Wren continues his mission to find living mythological creatures with the help of the Mythbusters team, a group of intellectual boys and girls, all of whom consider themselves “the good guys” compared to the “bad guys” who keep attacking Clivo and the cryptids on his travels. Fisher balances action, travel, intrigue, faux science, and light, trope-based comedy, though the overuse of bro-isms such as “dude” out of the wannabe-manly sidekicks’ mouths wears thin, and some of the stereotypes verge on offensive, such as the two clueless cooking-and-cleaning adult female characters and the mysterious tough-guy Egyptian cult members who seem straight out of Indiana Jones. This easy-to-follow adventure doesn’t contain a lot of character development but it’s got a heavy dose of advice on friendship and being a “good guy.” The premise of the series relies upon a twist on evolutionary theory in which the cryptids adapt their unique abilities as long-lived individual organisms.
VERDICT The second in a readable adventure series that might appeal to fans of Michael Buckley’s “NERDS” series or Ron McGee’s “Ryan Quinn” books.

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