Stephan Pastis
Candlewick Press



This book for younger readers was created by the crazy man behind the ongoing strip pearls Before Swine. He brings his strange and wonderful sense of humor to the PI Genre for kids. And adults…

I came across it at Once Upon a Crime in Minneapolis where owner Gary told me “You have to read this”, and he was right.

Timmy Failure lives with his Mom and a pet Polar bear who goes by the name Total.  Total is also Timmy’s business partner which is why the PI  business is named Total Failure. Timmy takes on the tough cases while building up a nest egg to get bigger offices and become the most successful PI in the world. The case of the missing Halloween Candy was a doozy. He finds that his efforts are often thwarted by teachers who keep interfering by making him attend school, and a girl in his class who fancies that she too is a detective.

This book was pure fun and every page made me smile or laugh out loud. Seeing the world through the eyes of a boy who I’m guessing to be around 8 or 9 reminds me how much fun it was to be that age and have the world seem like a much easier place to navigate. The outrageous antics don’t seem that outrageous if you are that age. I would recommend this book to anyone who like to laugh, has kids or not, or loves books with private eyes. It’s a wonderful little $14.95 hardcover and worth every penny.


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