FICTION

The Stolen Slipper

Branches/Scholastic/. (Once Upon a Fairy Tale: Bk. 2). Dec. 2019. 96p. Tr $24.99. ISBN 9781338349764; pap. $4.99. ISBN 9781338349757.
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Gr 1-3–Kara and her partner Zed are back in this magical mystery series inspired by classic fairy tales. In their second adventure, the two must aid the Prince in retrieving a missing glass slipper so that he can find the love of his life. Adventure abounds as the two detectives not only find the magical item, but uncover a secret about the kingdom in the process. The mystery, like the story overall, is simple, but a few twists are tossed in to throw readers off the scent. In typical “Branches” fashion, word choice and sentence structure are perfectly selected for the intended audience, and serve as a wonderful primer for more advanced chapter books. A plethora of pictures helps visualize the story and break up the text; artist Pamintuan depicts a variety of ethnicities among the characters, an excellent choice considering fantasy books often lack characters of color.
VERDICT A joyful blend of mystery and fantasy, and another solid series installment by “Branches.”

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