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Book by Hale, Bruce
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Gr 2-5-Lizard Chet Gecko, a fourth grade gumshoe at Emerson Hickey Elementary, loves mysteries. This audiobook includes two stories base on the books by Bruce Hale (Harcourt, 2001). In The Chameleon Wore Chartreuse, Chet helps a friend find her missing brother while also dealing with schoolyard bullies. In The Mystery of Mr. Nice, he and his assistant discover that the principal is an imposter who wants to change the elementary school into a vocational school to train crooks and hoodlums. The characters in each role are animals true to their nature. However, the females are in traditional roles as secretary, teacher, and school nurse. The plot is a bit transparent, allowing younger listeners to put the pieces of the puzzle together easily. The vocabulary may be difficult for the youngest listeners, and the use of slang terminology may confuse some. Actor Jon Cryer does a fine job of voice inflection to portray each character. Teachers will want to use this for listening pleasure as well as to teach the mystery genre. The author's frequent use of similes also makes this a great tool for teaching writing. For group and individual enjoyment.
Lisa Radmer, North Bend Elementary School, WA
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
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