cover image Finders Creepers (Half Past Peculiar #1)

Finders Creepers (Half Past Peculiar #1)

Derek Fridolfs, illus. by Dustin Nguyen. Scholastic, $14.99 (224p) ISBN 978-1-338-25446-4

Twins Esmeralda and Atticus Fetch are the famed pet finders in the town of Thorns Hollow, boasting a 99% success rate. While cleaning the basement of their family home, they find an old “lost dog” poster and decide to visit the hound’s owners, Prof. Hadrick Mordred and his wife, Dr. Persephone. When the twins arrive, they meet the once-missing dog, Maxwell, and receive an icy welcome, the Mordreds occupied with safari-like preparations. Atticus, feeling unsettled by the encounter, has his concerns confirmed when Maxwell shows up at the Fetch home and leads the twins into the now-empty Mordred house, where they discover a hidden doorway to a different world. In this hybrid between prose, collaged papers, and comics-style storytelling, Fridolfs’s (the Secret Hero Society series) efficient text complements artist Nguyen’s illustrations: intricate backgrounds that frame the more loosely rendered twins. The thin volume packs in a few too many plot points, presumably to be continued in the sequel, but macabre fashionings keyed to a missing-pet plot offer an eccentric charm. Final art not seen by PW. Ages 8–12. [em](July) [/em]