Title: Encyclopedia Brown, Super SleuthEncyclopedia Brown Super Sleuth
Author: Donald J. Sobol
Illustrator: James Bernardin
Pages: 87
Reading Level: 9-12
Star Rating: ★★

Idaville’s personal sleuth is back!

The Stories.

The Case of the Hollow Tree. Encyclopedia’s father has captured a thief – but the man refuses to reveal the name of his accomplice. He does however, tell the location of the booty. Will Chief Brown be able to snag the accomplice at the scene of the treasure?

The Case of the Headless Ghost. Bugs Meany claims that the ghost of Old Cutthroat Flint has for returned for his long lost treasure. He offers the kids around Idaville the chance to catch a glimpse of the ghost for a small fee. Can Encyclopedia prove that this is no ghost they see?

The Case of the Stolen Moonstone. Bugs hates Encyclopedia and would do anything to get even with him. So, he works up a false charge of theft against Encyclopedia and even bribes a witness. Can Encyclopedia prove that Bugs is lying?

The Case of the Disappearing Hundreds. Mr. O’Hara, owner of Idaville’s favorite soda shop, has a new case for Encyclopedia. Three hundred dollars have been stolen from his counter, and only three people could have possibly committed the robbery. But which of the three was it?

The Case of the Patriotic Volunteer. Mr. Jefferson has come down from Washington as the representative of a charity operation there. He is asking the children of Idaville for their assistance through donations, but Encyclopedia isn’t so sure that he should be trusted…

The Case of the Stolen Watch. The watch has been stolen from Pablo Pizarro’s modern art display. But who would want to steal a petty thing like that?

The Case of the Gym Bag. Baldy Jones and Fleet Fletcher, competitors on the track, are in the midst of a heated argument over the ownership of a gym bag. It’s up to Chief and Encyclopedia Brown to make the call.

The Case of the Supercomputer Brain. George Perkins has invented a Supercomputer Brain Liquid – just drink a few bottles, and you’ll be brilliant! But the brain of Encyclopedia is convinced that this is a hoax…

The Case of the Giggling Goldilocks. Patrick Behr is convinced that his neighbor, Goldie Jenkins, has been breaking into his house while he is away, but he has no proof. Could Encyclopedia please furnish the proof?

The Case of Shoeless Sam. Shoeless Sam is only one home run away from holding the all-time record in Idaville. But the Sluggers, a rival team, are determined that he will not break that record. Can Encyclopedia ensure fair play?

Discussion.

I’ve said before that there are three recurring themes in the Encyclopedia Brown series. True to form, they made their appearance here in Sets the Pace.

1)      Encyclopedia’s father, Chief Brown brings home all of his most difficult cases home for Encyclopedia to solve because he’s so much smarter than all adults.

2)      Sally Kimball is described not only as the prettiest girl in fifth grade, but also as the best fighter. She punches out boys whenever she feels they deserve it.

3)      Children call each other names and get into shouting matches.

Conclusion. While perhaps not the most constructive way for children to be investing their time, Encyclopedia Brown: Super Sleuth is not evil and will sharpen younger readers’ skills of analysis and observation of details.

Note: This is a review of Encyclopedia Brown: Super Sleuth, not the entire Encyclopedia Brown Series.

Review © 2013 Laura Verret

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