cover image Where Are My Books?

Where Are My Books?

Debbie Ridpath Ohi. Simon & Schuster, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4424-6741-5

Spencer’s beloved books keep disappearing. After his younger sister is ruled out as suspect (an accusation that earns Spencer the punishment of playing tea party with her), he sets a trap and discovers that the culprit is a family of bibliophilic squirrels (in their defense, they do leave behind tulip heads and metal bolts as payment). How can one book lover begrudge another? So Spencer formalizes the borrowing (“Just like at the library, they had to return the books they borrowed before they could borrow more”) and even sets up a story hour. With its clever, mop-headed hero and supporting cast of silent but highly expressive squirrels (including a mother squirrel who sports chic turquoise reading glasses), this is a story that should quickly find its way into the hearts of book lovers of all ages. Readers’ only wish may be that Ohi (Naked!), in her first book as both writer and illustrator, had spent less time in the setup and more on how Spencer and his new friends bloom and grow as a literary community. Ages 4–8. Agent: Ginger Knowlton, Curtis Brown. (May)