"For some reason, mysteries seem to follow us," says Catalina "Cat" Duran. In this case, the mystery in which Cat and her friends Egg, Sam, and Gum become embroiled takes place at the City Aquarium. When two of the seals are tranquilized, then "kidnapped," the team has their work cut out for them. Their first suspect appears to be wearing a sealskin coat; but it turns out it is manmade fur. The next suspect is a worker at the aquarium who fears her beloved seals are overworked; but she's heartbroken by their disappearance. The culprit—who shall not be revealed here!—is a good surprise. This is one of several books in the "Field Trip Mysteries" series. The format is very reader-friendly: frequent and colorful illustrations; a "Detective's Dictionary" of terms (tranquilizer; acrylic); and even a science report on animal rights. If that is not enough, there is a terrific Capstone Kids website filled with games, quizzes, and other activities. The "Field Trip Mysteries" section includes very cool "spy kit downloadables" like a fingerprint database. All in all, this series (and the website) should provide hours of enjoyment as well as information. Reviewer: Naomi Milliner
Steve Brezenoff is the author ofmore than fiftymiddle-grade chapter books, includingthe Field Trip Mysteries series, the Ravens Pass series of thrillers, and the Return to Titanic series. In his spare time, he enjoys video games, cycling, and cooking. Steve lives in Minneapolis with his wife, Beth, and their son and daughter.
Spanish-born Marcos Calo began his career working for various Spanish animation studios as a concept artist for CGI movies. During that time he also worked freelance doing illustration, commercial work, and occasionally comic books. Marcos usually works digitally, although he still likes to start his drawings on paper first. After wandering around different cities, he is finally settled in A Coruña, where his collection of comics and picture books is always growing.