The Hunters
by Jim Hummel
Trafford Publishing

"Swooped up by the little ghost for their next investigation, these girls are real detectives, not imitation."

Donning their Sherlock Holmes-like detective hats, sisters Morgan and Parker are on a mission to help Rusty, the ghost, recover the life spark of his flattened out, fellow apparition, Fred. In an amalgamous blend of fun, adventure, mystery, and learning, author Jim Hummel takes young readers on an interactive and creative journey. Here the story moves from a present day ice cream shoppe to the haunting Boo town where the moustachioed villain Mr. Bad is up to no good. The tale then travels back in time to highlight celebrated figures and important moments throughout history.

While rhyming two-line verses carry Hummel's simple narrative, the book undoubtedly comes alive through the odd assortment of characters and visuals. Colorful illustrations seem charmingly reminiscent of comic book pages with classic speech bubbles. Excitement is clearly defined in the details. From the flying "ghosties," to the expressive face on a bucket or the anthropomorphized reactions of a framed painting on the wall, each picture page offers a new playing field for discovery. The author makes clever use of an ever-present quirky bee man, flitting about with his flying ace cap and goggles, to quiz readers on topics ranging from math and science to history and trivia. A comical character, he helps keep the audience engaged. As a bit of an add-on, even the final pages offer up enticing artful projects, serving as a jump start for youngsters' future creative endeavors.

Though certainly a multi-seasonal book, the essence of mystery and secrets surrounding the central story frame of the main character "ghosties" and an atmosphere filled with a full moon, inverted bats, glowing jack-o-lanterns, and a spooky house might bring readers to realize this work as a welcome fall read. Ultimately, no matter what time of year, The Hunters should prove a fun and informative treat.

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