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Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Trouble with Chickens, A J.J. Tully Mystery by Doreen Cronin

Hi there readers.

Welcome back to another week here at Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.
These past few weeks have been very trying, but thank goodness for good friends and good books to help lighten the mood.  No, seriously.  THANK YOU. we tackle a review for a book that celebrated it's official release the first week of March, saw it's time in my hot little hands in early April and alas, fell into the "read but need to review" stack lickety split.  *le SIGH*  Oh for more hours in a day to get all the bookish goodness to out to you...but enough of my lamenting on time issues, it's time to reveal that book!  Are you ready?  Here we go.  Today's book of choice is....

A J.J. Tully Mystery
illustrated by

J.J. Tully is one serious dog in search of a little R & R.  Normally those initials would mean "rest and relaxation" especially when considering J.J. is retired (he was a daring rescue dog, no less) but this dog isn't one to say no when trouble comes calling.  He answers that door (no matter how reluctantly) and pursues the truth until the mystery is solved or the missing one found.  This case though...may be more than meets the beady eye....after all, can you really trust a chicken?

If you're ready for a quick mystery suitable for all ages, listen closely...this one's for you.  J.J. is given the voice of a detective from one of those old-timey black and white movies or television shows through his dialogue and narration.  You can just picture him propping his little doggie feet up on a desk, fedora cocked back, lightning flashing in the window behind him when Moosh, the chicken in distress, walks in....wait, chicken?  Oh yes....CHICKEN.  Most of the story takes place on the homestead he has "retired" to but as we all no, just because his intent was to retire, life sometimes doesn't go along with that in point.  Moosh, the mother hen (literally) is trying to solve the mystery of her missing children, errr...chicks.  You see one by one they seem to be disappearing until *POOF*...Sweetie, Poppy, Dirt, and Sugar are all gone!  What's that?  Are those their real names?  Well no....but that's what J.J. calls 'em and I'm not going to be the one to correct him, are you? 

With the cast of characters already quite full of well, "characters", it's hard to imagine anyone else stealing a part of that limelight, but alas, one does.  His name....Vince the Funnel.  He's the dog that rules the interior of the house and whatever he says goes.  He's quite funny actually and the reason for his nickname is easy to see (quite literally)....but his scheming is the truly interesting part.  For a dog, he is one devious little fellow!  I might even venture to say that he may take the cake on a few of the stunts my own real-life fur babies have pulled on yours truly and with such calculated thoughts behind it too. 

Fast forward to the final scenes and all I can say is that I love the twist near the end of the story.  It reveals why the one behind the schemes did what they did...and trust me, it's not exactly what or who you might think but anyone with a bookish heart will certainly appreciate it (and be left with a me).  Now did I mention the illustrations because really, they are too much fun to miss.  First thing I thought when I saw the cover was...hmm, did I miss a new Disney movie coming out or something?  It just has that clean animation look to it that they are known for.  Could it be made into one?  Certainly...there's a lot of fun to be had but in the mean time the expressions on J.J.'s face as the events unfold, Sugar and her chicky crews looks as things get dicey and the ever frightening presence of all priceless.

It's short (much like my review, but hey...I don't want to spoil the good stuff!) and it's sweet.  It's perfect for adult readers as well as a read -a-long for the young ones with a little help from nearby adults to conquer a larger word here and there providing entertainment AND a little learning all in one....and it's so sneaky about it, they won't even realize it.  This book is available now so be on the look out for it on a bookstore shelf near you. 

Review copy won via LibraryThing Early Reviewers.  (THANKS!)  If you haven't checked out the LibraryThing site or this fabulous review program, you don't know what you're missing.  I'd highly recommend taking a look around the site post haste...and of course, you can always follow along on Twitter

Until next time...happy reading!


Confuzzled Shannon said...

I thought it was for a movie as well just looking at the cover... Great review! :-)

Misha said...

How cute! There are hardly any mysteries for younger readers - this sounds like an intriguing (and an adorable) read.

Angela Ackerman said...

Chicken in distress--that's awesome! Sounds like a great mystery book!

Angela @ The Bookshelf Muse

Gina said...

"Confuzzled" Shannon: Thanks! ^_^

Misha: Agreed...true children's mysteries are harder to come by. ^_^

Angela Ackerman: Definitely was...thanks for stopping by!

Tales of Whimsy said...

Oh wow. Sounds so cute!

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