cover image The Muffin Fiend

The Muffin Fiend

Daniel Manus Pinkwater. Lothrop, Lee and Shepard Books, $14 (48pp) ISBN 978-0-688-04274-5

From Pinkwater we expect the pure wackiness of a mind given to bizarre bolts of imagination. Absurdities and a few gaps in logic aside, we get it in spades. Someone is stealing all the muffins in Europe; French Inspector Le Chat looks to a champion muffin consumer for a detective on the case. Who? Mozart. Yes, that Mozart. With plays on famous pieces (Don Pastrami), E. T., and other assorted phenomena, Pinkwater works on two levels, tickling those sophisticates who know what Gorgonzola is, yet amusing a younger group who will respond to the silly prospect that a muffin fiend is the world's most dangerous criminal. The black-and-white pictures seem to be a cross between linoleum blocks and supermarket bar-code computer creations. (8-12)