Jo Berludi, by Liz Flaherty

While Sal drinks her lemonade and mine, I scout around the backyard looking for clues. I take photos of the clothesline and the garden path. I pace out the distance between the side gate and the clothesline. Mmmm, tricky. To get down the side of the house the thief would have to pass the kitchen.

Jo (Jonah) Berludi is a private inevstigator. He may be only eight, but when he’s dressed in his detective kit people think he’s older – especially when they see his business card.

When Jo’s neighbour, Mrs Pickwick, has a problem with underwear disappearing from her washing line, she calls Jo in to solve the case. It isn’t easy to figure out – especially when the mystery keeps getting bigger. Who would want size 26 underwear? And why is fresh fruit going missing from the fruit store around the corner? Still, with Jo on the case it isn’t long before it is solved.

Jo Berludi is a cute chapter book title, part of the Breakers series from Macmillan Education. Aimed at children with a reading age of around nine years, it has plenty of action and mystery to appeal to young readers. The line drawings of Jeff Gilmour are a nice addition.

A fun read.

Jo Berludi, by Liz Flaherty
Macmillan Education, 2003