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Mystery Ride!    by Scott Magoon order for
Mystery Ride!
by Scott Magoon
Order:  USA  Can
Harcourt, 2008 (2008)

Read an Excerpt

* *   Reviewed by Hilary Daninhirsch

What child hasn't gotten into a car, demanding to know where he or she is going, and how long it will take to get there? Echoes of 'are we there yet?' may play in the minds of parents as they read their children this book about a family who take mystery rides.

Of course, many of these mystery rides end up in fun places, such as the zoo or the ice cream shop, but many more of these rides lead to not-so-fun errands, such as the laundromat or the grocery store. The children in the story know all the tricks and are no longer fooled by their parents' use of the term mystery rides.

Despite their complaints, though, they enjoy the time spent with family. A little droll humor is sprinkled into this light read: 'Mom and Dad say that sometimes it's good not to know where you're going and that getting there is half the adventure. The other half, Dad says, is getting your errands done.'

As we were reading the book, it occurred to me that the illustrative style, featuring goofy mouse-like critters, was familiar - the same artist lent his hand to Rabbit & Squirrel: A Tale of War and Peas. In both books, the creatures depicted are silly and exaggerated. The text is sparse, the theme is recognizable, and the drawings are fun, making this book a decent selection for younger children.

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