The Book Thief (alt. ver.): Where Are My Books? by Debbie Ridpath Ohi
SPENCER LOVED BOOKS. HIS FAVORITE BEDTIME STORY WAS NIGHTY-NIGHT, NARWHAL.
EVERY NIGHT SPENCER PUT THE BOOK BACK WHERE IT BELONGED. THAT WAY HE'D ALWAYS BE ABLE TO FIND IT.
UNTIL ONE MORNING....
Still in his beloved red narwhal pajamas, Spencer searches for his book.
It's nowhere. Not under his bed or on his shelf or in his closet.
His parents are not worried, sure that it'll turn up. But instead other books disappear from his shelves.
It's sad when Send In The Clown Fish vanishes. But when Sea Monkey Bob goes missing, that's IT! Spencer is sure there's a book thief in the house. Spencer shakes down his little sister, setting off a meltdown that requires way too much tea partying with her to make up for his false accusation. Then Spencer has a thought. Everywhere his books were, he finds odd stuff lying around--a rusty bolt, a tulip petal, a nut--in place of the missing books. Hmmm! Who or what would do that....?
Spencer sets up a trap, tying a stout length of yarn around an attractive book as bait and following the trail back in the morning to the real thieves (or thieves)--a bibliophilic squirrel family who have mistaken his room for a used book store. It takes some persuading, but eventually they hit on a compromise: the squirrels can borrow one book at a time, IF they return it whenever they're ready for a new one.
Spencer's Lending Library is soon more popular than a new crop of pecans, in Debbie Ridpath Ohi's Where Are My Books? (Simon and Schuster, 201), a book about books which makes a good introduction to good library use. Ohi's cartoons are detailed and whimsical and even non-book-lovers will go for the mystery and Spencer's nifty snare for his brushy-tailed book-nabbers. "The brightly colored, digital cartoons are expressive and sweetly endearing. Muted posters on the wall proclaim, "Turn it off and READ A BOOK!" says School Library Journal.