From School Library Journal
Grade 2-4AIn this companion to The Losers Fight Back (1994) and Wild Willie and King Kyle, Detectives (1993, both Clarion), Willie's old friend Kyle moves back to the neighborhood from Cleveland and his new friend Lucy is jealous. Kyle's new house is a "handyman's special" where the children discover secret passages, an attic filled with junk, and a mystery. Lucy finds out that the former owner was an amateur detective and recluse who died in Kyle's room. The animosity between Kyle and Lucy escalates. Willie eventually figures out that he doesn't have to solve this problem and leaves it to his two friends to work out. Helpfully, a mysterious ghost turns up at Kyle's house. It groans, spouts lines from old movies (e.g., Scarface), and turns out to be a parrotAjust the catalyst needed to reshape the formerly squared-off friends into a happy triad. Readers can no doubt look forward to another book detailing the activities of the newly formed Scarface Detective Agency. Good fun, with up-to-date dialogue, short chapters, and Truesdell's big-nosed, large-eyed, loosely limned characters.ASusan Hepler, Burgundy Farm Country Day School, Alexandria, VA
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Kirkus Reviews
This third hilarious Wild Willie Mystery (Wild Willie and King Kyle Detectives, 1993; The Losers Fight Back, 1994) reunites Willie with Kyle, who has moved back to the neighborhood. Problems arise when Kyle meets Willie's new best friend, Lucy. Soon Willie is involved in a ``Friend War'' as Kyle and Lucy battle for his attention. Only the lure of a mystery waiting to be solved rescues the troubled trio from imminent disaster. Kyle has moved into the former home of now-deceased Loony Loraine Lamonde, a crime show enthusiast and hermit; strange noises convince him that the house is haunted. Joosse deftly captures the exuberance of childhood: At one point, Willie exclaims, ``We were gasping. We were sweating. We were scared stiff. We were having the time of our lives.'' His witty commentary combined with the outlandish plot and practical resolution make this rousing tale a success. Truesdell's whimsical pen-and-ink drawings depict the humorous predicaments and add to the entertainment, right down to the dissolution of the Friend War and Lucy's declaration: ``Three minds are sure better than one.'' (Fiction. 7-10) -- Copyright ©1998, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.