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Chicagoland Detective Agency 2: The Maltese Mummy (Graphic Universe) Library Binding – April, 2011


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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

In this second volume in the Chicagoland Detective Agency graphic-novel series, teen sleuths Megan and Raf and their talking-dog partner, Bradley, get caught up in two seemingly unrelated happenings: the arrival of a rock idol and the disappearance of a mummy from the Art Institute. The story is a bit light on the detective front (the investigating primarily consists of always being where the villains are concocting their nefarious plans) but heavy on goofy-edged action and manga-inflected artwork. Another good-natured adventure with a few nods to classic detective stories. Grades 4-7. --Ian Chipman

About the Author

Writer and feminist herstorian Trina Robbins has been writing books, comics, and graphic novels for over 30 years. Her most recent books are The Brinkley Girls (Fantagraphics) and Forbidden City: the Golden Age of Chinese Nightclubs (Hampton Press). Her newest graphic novel is the three-part YA series Chicagoland Detective Agency for Graphic Universe(tm).
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 9 and up
  • Grade Level: 4 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 580L (What's this?)
  • Series: Graphic Universe (Book 2)
  • Library Binding: 59 pages
  • Publisher: Graphic Universe (April 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0761346155
  • ISBN-13: 978-0761346159
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 6.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,049,420 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Raf Hernandez and "doggy Einstein," Bradley were gaming on the Raf-box when Megan Yamamura walked in chattering about her invitation to a press conference. There hadn't been much business (none actually) at the Chicagoland Detective Agency and so Raf, "the prince of nerds," was busy designing video games. Megan was excited because she was going to the conference to see Sun D'Arc, an awesome singer, and she had an extra ticket to offer Raf, her one and only friend.

Raf suddenly came down with the flu and Megan decided to invite William Johnson instead. When they arrived, Megan pushed through the crowd with William and snagged a couple of saved seats. When Sun D'Arc and his manager, Vora Schak, came out the questions began to fly from all directions, but Vora quickly told them to all "SHADUP." They were only going to pick one reporter to ask questions and that was none other than . . . William! Megan quickly got in their good graces and was able to get them agree to let her go along.

Megan began to pop some questions, but was put on ignore. "Sun, about the rumors that your father is a wizard--" Mysteriously, he was only interested in William and asked if he'd try on his frock coat, a coat that turned out to be a "perfect fit." Vora quickly clapped his hands and showed them to the door. Once outside Megan put her ear to the door and listened as they talked about William. "The boy is exactly the right size, shape, everything! I feel the blood of my homeland flowing through his veins!" Back on the home front Raf and Bradley had discovered Ra-Hotep, a mummy at the Art Institute, was missing his amulet. The sudden disappearance of William deepened the mystery. Were they somehow connected?
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Format: Paperback
(ARC provided by NetGalley)

This is the second book in the Chicagoland Detective Agency series and it's a fast paced, adventurous short story. Big name superstar Sun D'Arc has shown up at Megan's school and all of the kids are awestruck and can't wait to meet him. But Sun appears to have a secret, and one of Megan's and Raf's friends go missing after meeting Sun in person. What's Sun's secret? And why does he manager look so familiar?

I really liked the premise of the book and was hoping for something like the old Encyclopedia Brown series....but I was left feeling vaguely disappointed. It is a fast paced story, but it seems like some of the story got dropped out along the way. We jump around so fast that it often seemed confusing to me. And honestly I was a bit disappointed in an aspect of the ending (I won't provide spoilers, but I'll say it was a lack of reaction to something happening.) The art work was so-so. Supposedly the kids are in high school, but Megan looked like she was 10 and Raf looked like he was 20 (which was a bit creepy to be honest.)

I can see how elementary school kids might like this book, it seems about the right pace for them, but it really doesn't work well for anyone above the age of say 14.
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Format: Paperback
While I enjoyed the first volume to this series, I'll admit that it did have its flaws. The only two of note was that the dialogue between our young heroes didn't seem to flow all that well & some of the book's messages were a little awkwardly placed. (I know I wasn't the only one who noticed that.) The Chicagoland team seem to have listened to what the crowd had to say because not only was the interaction better, but the messages in the book was worked in better. (Although in this book the message is more educational than anything else.)

The artwork also seems to have improved, being more playful & confident in this volume. While I was a bit surprised at some of the stuff mentioned by the story's villain later in the book, parents will be able to show this to their kids without having to worry about any truly objectionable material.

Overall this really was a great read & one that I truly think kids will love.

(ARC provided by NetGalley)
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Format: Paperback
These are fun books for kids who love the Bone series by Jeff Smith and other comic-style stories. They are surprisingly full of voice and provide an appealing detective story format for middle readers. Despite being in black and white, the graphics (by Tyler Page) are very well done. I love the characters! Megan and Raf are funny and totally likable, and Bradley is too cute for words.

My 3rd grade son and surprisingly, my 6-year-old daughter, enjoyed both books. I recommend both this one and The Drained Brains Caper, especially for reluctant readers and comic fans.
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Chicagoland Detective Agency 2: The Maltese Mummy (Graphic Universe)
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