Years ago, I picked up Ballpark Mysteries #01 The Fenway Foul-Up by David A. Kelly (illustrated by. While I was not jumping up and down and yelling, “Kill the Ump!” over it, I was thinking “This is good.” I was recommending the series when it was appropriate. Yet, I never read another in the series until the other day.
Sadly, book 14 The Cardinals Caper, was damaged. I picked it up before we had to process it as damaged, and spent a nice lunch reading about how a beloved Dalmatian dog was dognapped by someone who wanted the Cardinals World Series trophy as ransom. I practically immediately said, “The butler did it!” Okay, there is no butler, but there is a superstitious baseball player, a cranky horse wrangler, a hotdog vendor who tells bad jokes (but has good hotdogs) and a grounds keeper that puts peanut butter on everything. And there are two cousins, Mike and Kate, who love baseball as much as they like to solve mysteries. (Spoiler: they will solve this one).
Great for ages (high) six to (low) nine, this chapter book mystery is obvious to the adult reader, but to kids, they will be sucked into the mystery as well. You can read aloud to a child or group, or read as a silent, solo read. This is Encyclopedia Brown for the slightly younger crowd and with a more modern twist. Such as Kate is a bit smarter than Mike, who has the habit of always needing to eat. Of course, his knowledge of peanut butter does come in handy.