Monday, October 29, 2018

Heidi Heckelbeck and the Snoopy Spy by Wanda Coven

Heidi Heckelbeck and her best friend Lucy are hanging out in the privacy of her own bedroom, playing a game called "Would You, Could You?" and Heidi has just revealed that she would like to ask Stanley Stonewrecker to go with her to the movies.

Lucy shrieked in laughter. "I knew it all the time!"

Then something went BONK under Heidi's bed.

"Henry!" she screamed.

Henry wiggled out from under the bed. He had on a trench coat and a weird hat.

"Super Spy strikes again!" Henry cheered.

Tattling to Mom doesn't help. The next morning Heidi's All About Folder is not on her desk where she left it. It's nowhere to be found--until it turns up in Henry's backpack on the bus to school and he begins to read Heidi's remarks about her friend Bruce's science inventions. Heidi manages to get her work back, but at recess, she discovers that Henry is still spying on her--this time hiding in a bush beside basketball court and almost reveals her crush on Stanley in front of Heidi's rival, Melanie Maplethorpe.

Henry's constant spying is getting serious. Maybe it's time for Heidi to pull out her biggest personal secret from under her bed--her Book of Spells--and put a "total truth" spell on her little brother.

And the next morning Heidi finds out that her spell is indeed working. Henry just can't help telling the truth. He tells Mom she snores like a lion snarling and informs Dad that his scrambled eggs are really GROSS. The Heidi asks him the question that will prove to Mom and Dad that Henry is a serious snoop.

"Henry, did you sneak into my room last night and look at my Book of Spells?

Henry nodded happily. "Of course, I did. I looked for a diary, but all I could find was your crummy Book of Spells."

Dad forbids any more snooping, but Heidi doesn't have time before school to reverse the spell on Henry, and she begins to worry that he will be compelled to spill the beans about her spells and other inconvenient truths at school. And Heidi's worst fears are realized when she and Henry find themselves both on the carpet in Principal Pennypacker's office.

But Principal Pennypacker is a pro, unpacking that tangled web of truth-telling, and all's well that ends well in Wanda Coven's latest installment in her popular beginning chapter book series, Heidi Heckelbeck and the Snoopy Spy (Little Simon, 2018). It's all in the family when Heidi discovers what Henry really wants with all his snooping, and brother and sister learn that not all secrets should be told. With artist Priscilla Burris's comic blackline illustrations, this book is just right for primary grade readers, funny and with a bit of maybe magic.

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