Thursday, 26 March 2015

Review: Detective Gordon - The First Case by Ulf Nilsson

Publisher: Gecko Press
Format: Paperback / eBook
Released: March 1st, 2015
Rating: 8/10

Amazon summary:

Someone’s stealing the squirrel’s nuts, and it’s up to Detective Gordon to catch the thief. Unfortunately, solving this crime means standing in the snow and waiting for a long time... If only he had an assistant—someone small, fast, and clever—to help solve this terrible case. Then Detective Gordon would be able to go back to doing what he’s best at: thinking, eating cakes, drinking tea, and stamping important papers. 


I love books like this, so it should come as no surprise to hear that I really enjoyed The First Case. It's like a graphic novel with more emphasis on the novel part, and it also happens to include some excellent illustrations by Gitte Spee. First published in Sweden, Detective Gordon's story has been translated for worldwide audiences and what a treat it is - it's a truly lovely book!

Detective Gordon, a very clever toad, must solve a particularly troubling case of a squirrel's missing nuts, and to do that he needs help. Buffy the mouse is just the person for the job, and together they set out to catch the petty criminal responsible for the theft. As ever, nothing is quite that simple and Detective Gordon finds himself with a more difficult job than he thought. Will he solve the crime with the help of his new friend?

I've always been a fan of animal characters (thanks, Narnia) so this story is right up my street. There's a chubby toad and a cute little mouse (called Buffy - instant win!) who make friends even though have very differing personalities, and that's the best part of this story for me. They overcome a lot to make a successful team, and it's greatly detailed on the page by the brilliant illustrations I mentioned earlier. In fact, they remind me of those in The Wind in the Willows!

The First Case marks what I hope is the start of a popular series for children, and a book that is a fun read for any age. There are all kinds of life lessons hidden within its pages - half the fun is uncovering them through the actions of a toad and a mouse, and the other half is spent marvelling at the magical depictions of these characters. I look forward to reading more from Ulf Nilsson and Detective Gordon!

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