The Ostrich Conspiracy
The Ostrich Conspiracy

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Series: Platypus Police Squad Vol. 2   

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Annotation: Detectives Rick Zengo and Corey O'Malley investigate foul play at the opening of the Kalamazoo City Dome, the world's largest indoor amusement complex.
Catalog Number: #80866
Format: Perma-Bound Edition from Publisher's Hardcover
All Formats: Search
Publisher: HarperCollins
Copyright Date: 2014
Edition Date: 2014
Pages: 218 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-06-207166-1 Perma-Bound: 0-605-81539-9
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-06-207166-8 Perma-Bound: 978-0-605-81539-1
Dewey: Fic
LCCN: 2013047721
Dimensions: 21 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
The duck-billed police detectives introduced in The Frog Who Croaked (2013) find another case that exposes the seamy underside of their supposedly respectable hometown, Kalamazoo City. Someone is sabotaging the newly opened Kalamazoo Dome, an enormous indoor-outdoor amusement park that is the pet project of Mayor Davis. When rookie platypus cop Rick Zengo and his gruff veteran partner, Corey O'Malley, investigate, suspicion falls on the Dome's three contractors l of whom come from rival city Walhalla and have hidden connections with Mayor Davis. Though the real culprit is ultimately unmasked and, after a dramatic chase up a roller coaster, nabbed, those connections force Davis to resign, giving oily local tycoon Frank Pandini Jr. a chance to throw his hat into the ring. Stay tuned for future malfeasance. As before, Krosoczka incorporates sheaves of stock cop-show characters and tropes into his caper and illustrates it with cartoon scenes (not seen in finished form) on nearly every spread. Fans will welcome this new episode.
Horn Book
Platypus detectives Zengo and O'Malley return for another crime-busting adventure. All of Kalamazoo City is excited about the new indoor/outdoor amusement park under the city dome, also the location for an upcoming blockbuster film. Things soon go haywire; who's trying to destroy the dome and why? Everyone is a suspect in this mystery overflowing with twists and detective-story tropes. Black-and-white cartoons punctuate the lightheartedness.
Kirkus Reviews
This book isn't nearly as odd as it sounds. The detectives in Kalamazoo City are platypuses, and the mayor is an ostrich, but other than that, this is a standard-issue police story. Detective Zengo is an eager, young member of the police squad (everyone calls him "rookie" or "slugger"), and his partner, O'Malley, is a hardened member of the force who says things like, "Not sure if you're old enough to ride, slugger" (ouch). The squad even wears sunglasses, like the detectives on TV. That's not to say that the book will ever be confused for a modern-day version of Dragnet. The case involves a burning amusement park and a movie star. But in spite of the quirks, the mystery is a boilerplate sort of investigation. The dialogue is hardly ever more interesting than "…you guys go check out the administration offices on the other side of the park." The mystery might not be startling, but it's never predictable, either. Almost every character is a legitimate suspect, right up until the end. As training wheels for the police procedural, kids could do a lot worse. Retailers won't need to stock up on sunglasses or platypus dolls, but readers will keep turning pages up to the last chapter, and quite a few of them will be ready, immediately, for the next volume. (Mystery. 8-12)
School Library Journal
Gr 3&11;5&12; A pair of odd-couple detectives are out to crack the case in this second book in the series. The mayor of Kalamazoo City has just opened what he hopes to be his crowning achievement&12;the Kalamazoo Dome&12;a state of the art indoor/outdoor amusement park. But opening night is a complete disaster. Who's to blame? Is it the mayor? Suspicious business mogul Frank Pandini, Jr.? Or someone with an even higher profile? Detectives Corey O'Malley and Rick Zengo are determined to track down the culprit. The pacing is steady, with periods of dialogue broken up with bursts of action. Characters are mostly types, in keeping with the style of the genre. There are some fairly sophisticated concepts of back-room political maneuvering and the effects of an amusement park on local business sprinkled into the story that may go over some readers' heads. Black-and-white spot illustrations appear on nearly every other page, often highlighting action or dramatic moments. Give this to readers who like their detective stories with a light touch.&12; Travis Jonker, Wayland Union Schools, MI
Reviewing Agencies: - Find Other Reviewed Titles
ALA Booklist (5/1/14)
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
Horn Book (8/1/14)
Kirkus Reviews
School Library Journal (4/1/14)
Word Count: 27,931
Reading Level: 5.5
Interest Level: 3-6
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 5.5 / points: 4.0 / quiz: 166873 / grade: Middle Grades

Jarrett J. Krosoczka is back with The Ostrich Conspiracy, the second installment in a fast-paced, action-packed, and hilarious middle-grade series featuring two platypus detectives, perfect for fans of Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Big Nate, and Lunch Lady.

The opening of the Kalamazoo City Dome—the world's largest indoor amusement complex—has everyone in the city buzzing, especially because it's going to be the shooting site for Chase Mercy's new blockbuster film. But that's when things start to go haywire. Who would want to sabotage the Dome, and why? Detectives Rick Zengo and Corey O'Malley are on the case!

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