Joey Fly, Private Eye in Creepy Crawly Crime
Joey Fly, Private Eye in Creepy Crawly Crime

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Series: Joey Fly, Private Eye Vol. 1   

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Annotation: When Joey Fly, Private Eye, is on the case, nothing can stop him from getting his bug.
Catalog Number: #36331
Format: Perma-Bound Edition
All Formats: Search
Special Formats: Graphic Novel Graphic Novel
Publisher: Henry Holt & Co.
Copyright Date: 2009
Edition Date: 2009
Illustrator: Numberman, Neil,
Pages: 96 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-8050-8786-9 Perma-Bound: 0-605-24718-8
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-8050-8786-4 Perma-Bound: 978-0-605-24718-5
Dewey: Fic
LCCN: 2007040041
Dimensions: 26 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
In a city totally inhabited by insects, Joey Fly is a private eye combating crime for a fee (which for a housefly is usually crumbs). Recently, Joey reluctantly hired a junior partner, a tough but clumsy scorpion named Sammy Stingtail. Together, the two are hired by a damsel in distress, the beautiful but airheaded butterfly Delilah, to recover her diamond pencil box. Delilah suspects her former friend Gloria the ladybug, but upon further investigation, Joey and Sammy have other ideas. Young readers will be amused by this noir-type story filled with classic detective dialogue and swarms of insect humor. The plot, characters, and setting in this graphic novel are all inspired from the novels of hardboiled-detective legends Hammett and Chandler, but Reynolds expertly injects a buggy layer of hilarious high jinks. Numberman takes it one step further by using the dark color schemes most associated with film noir combined with clean, detailed art. Kids will get caught in the web of this classic mystery cleverly disguised as a simple bug's tale.
Horn Book
In this graphic novel comic-drama, Joey Fly and his young assistant Sammy the scorpion solve the mystery of a missing pencil box and save a friendship gone wrong. Readers learn some tricks of the detective trade along with often-clumsy Sammy in this mock-noir satire of life in "the bug city." Sepia and blue-tinted illustrations feature exaggerated insect caricatures, ratcheting up the humor.
Kirkus Reviews
What detective wouldn't benefit from being a fly on the wall? Well, Joey Fly, a cool Sam Spadeesque private eye clad in trench coat and fedora, is just that insect. After hiring the surly Sammy Stingtail, a bumbling scorpion who's all thumbs—er, make that tail—he finds a case knocking at their door. Delilah, a beautiful butterfly, believes that her best friend, a ladybug named Gloria, has stolen her diamond pencil box. As the two gumshoes set out to crack the case, they encounter an imaginative cadre of insect witnesses. Joey Fly tries his best to be the suave sleuth, but is often comically kept on his toes by his hot-tempered young assistant. This playful pun-a-minute comic-book mystery is sure to charm. Numberman provides detailed backgrounds set in cool blues and warm sepia tones to create a visually engaging landscape smacking of noir-lite. Included at the end is a list of items that young detectives must then page back through the art to find. An auspicious series kick-off. (Graphic novel. 7 & up)
School Library Journal
Gr 4-6 Hardboiled insect detective Joey Fly and his assistant, a young scorpion named Sammy Stingtail, search for a missing diamond pencil box belonging to Delilah, a femme fatale swallowtail butterfly. Simple, whimsical drawings and humorous dialogue give the book child appeal. The illustrations gray and sepia tones reference film noir, but this may be lost on younger readers, many of whom probably prefer more color in their comics. The clever writing doesnt keep the story from lagging at times: the case of a missing pencil box, in the end, cant sustain the most gripping narrative. Unique and witty, but not essential. Lisa Goldstein, Brooklyn Public Library, NY
Starred Review for Publishers Weekly

In this first installment of the Joey Fly, Private Eye series, Reynolds (Buffalo Wings) and Numberman, who makes a wowser of a debut, marry the film noir spoof to the graphic novel, and the result has the sweet smell of success written all over it. The mystery takes readers to the big insect city, where most of the inhabitants are “normal everyday bugs just trying to put three feet in front of the others.” But there are always a few rotten arthropods in the barrel, and keeping them in line is Joey Fly, a detective with a fedora, a sense of justice masquerading as cynicism, a flair for similes and really, really big eyes. Joey, clearly an adult, is given a sidekick, an impetuous but eager scorpion named Sammy Stingtail. The crime does get solved—it involves a stolen diamond pencil box—but like the best noirs, the particulars take a backseat to the irresistible interplay of moody visuals (Numberman wryly replicates the chiaroscuro mis-en-scène of Depression-era cinema) and hard-boiled patois (“The facts were starting to line up like centipedes at a shoe sale”). Ages 8–up. (Apr.)

Word Count: 9,483
Reading Level: 3.2
Interest Level: 2-5
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 3.2 / points: 1.0 / quiz: 128307 / grade: Middle Grades

Have you ever had one of those moments? You know--you're trying to find a stolen diamond pencil box for your beautiful butterfly customer, your mosquito witness won't give you any information, and your clumsy scorpion assistant has just tampered with your only bit of evidence? Joey Fly has those moments a lot. In fact, he's probably having one right now. But that won't stop him from solving the mystery in Creepy Crawly Crime , his fantastic first graphic novel!

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