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FICTION

The Peacock Detectives

Harper/HarperCollins/. Jan. 2020. 288p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780062896704.
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Gr 3-6–Eleven-year-old Cassie is an expert when it comes to tracking down her neighbors’ peacocks, which go missing frequently. She’s less confident, however, when it comes to dealing with changes in her family. Her older sister is making choices that Cassie doesn’t understand, her beloved grandfather is ill, her father is sinking into depression, and her mother seems to be separating herself from the family. Even her best friend Jonas is acting strange and moody. Can Cassie unravel the mysteries she’s facing in life, or will they prove to be too much for her detective skills? This Australian import has plenty of quirky charm. Though the mystery element is slight, there’s plenty of character development, and the book touches on many family and friendship situations with which readers will empathize. Fans of Sheila Turnage and Susan Patron are a natural audience for this story.
VERDICT Purchase where there’s a need for realistic fiction dealing with family issues.

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