If Doctor Dolittle and Amelia Bedelia had a child, it would be the Inspector. Columbo looks like Sherlock Holmes in comparison to Van Hoof! To say Inspector Billiam Van Hoof is bumbling is an understatement. But ages six to nine will be rolling in the cow patties laughing at the antics our not-so-heroic hero.
In Farm Crimes V01: Cracking the Case of the Missing Egg our hero gets lost on the way to the farm (at the bottom of the hill that he lives on top of), he confuses everyone around him, figures out who stole Chickens’ egg and the dog naps. In Farm Crimes V02: the Moo-Sterious Disappearance of Cow Van Hoof burns his scones, gets sidetracked by a cute goat from his past, confuses everyone around him, figures out what happened to Cow and the dog naps.
However, in book two there is a slightly disturbing note that Cow has been kidnapped to be turned into hamburger. While there is some adult (but kid appropriate) humor, this seemed to be a dark turn in an otherwise lighthearted story.
Sandra Dumais has created two books tht are not the cat’s meow for me, but many will enjoy the offbeat, kooky, crazy, mishaps. The illustrations are equally offbeat, kooky, crazy, and frankly a little off putting. The cartoon nature was not for me, but again, most kids will like that Cartoon Network-like imagery. With that said, a little research has shown that this might not be their only style, and I am curious to see what else they have illustrated.
If there is a book three is the Farm Crimes series, I might continue reading, but odds are I will not be among those who follow them.