Title: Beagle in a Backpack0-439-77521-3
Author: Ben M. Baglio
Illustrator: Ann Baum
Pages: 142
Reading Level: 9-12
Star Rating: ★★

Mandy Hope once again brings justice to the world of pets.

The Story.

Mandy is concerned about the Parker-Smythe’s macaw, Portia. Medically speaking there doesn’t seem to be anything wrong with her – her blood is fine and her x-rays reveal no problems. But she is barely eating. What can be wrong?

Mandy’s concern is temporarily diverted when she hears about the disappearance of Amber Hutton, a local girl, and one of the beagle puppies she had grown attatched to at the local pound.

Can Mandy find Amber and solve the mystery of Portia’s apathy?

 Discussion.

As the story begins, Mandy and James are planning their trick-or-treat route for Halloween. However, with all the excitement, they don’t have time to think much about Halloween (although several references are made to Halloween-ish topics – i.e. a person looks like a witch, the pastures looked ghostly, etc.). In the end, instead of trick-or-treating, Mandy and James go around giving out treats in exchange for donations to Little Briar Dog Rescue Center. Not a horrible idea, actually.

Amber Hutton is, as James says rolling his eyes, a clone of Mandy. She is as fierce as Mandy in her declamations of justice, and the two of them roundly condemn anyone they think shows less than the proper amount of devotion to animals.

‘Darn’ is used once.

Conclusion. An alright story. Read Marguerite Henry’s books if you want real animal stories.

Review © 2014 Laura Verret

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