One of the books I got last week was Belly Up, and kids' mystery by Stuart Gibbs. I absolutely loved it!
The book follows the adventures of Teddy Fitzroy. His parents are working at FunJungle, the newest theme park in the country that combines a zoo with an amusement park. The park's mascot is a temperamental hippo, and when the hippo dies under mysterious circumstances, Teddy becomes convinced that it was murder. But can he prove the case?
The book was a good combination of mystery and humor with good characters. I was kept guessing who the villain of the piece was until the end, when Teddy figured it out. The book did resort to bathroom humor a bit more than I normally enjoy, but here it didn't bother me so much. And I think tween boys will really enjoy that aspect of things.
But it was the characters that I really loved. It's hard in a kids' mystery to balance the need for the main character to investigate without making the adults seem like bad parents. That was handled here perfectly. And it changed as the book progressed, although keeping things realistic.
There were also some great action scenes involving animals that made my heart start racing.
I don't think I can recommend this book highly enough.
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