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The Mystery of Merlin and the Gruesome Ghost…
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The Mystery of Merlin and the Gruesome Ghost (Humpty Dumpty, Jr.,…

by Nate Evans

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Reviewed by Allison Fraclose for TeensReadToo.com

Humpty Dumpty, Jr., Hardboiled Detective, has cracked a lot of tough cases in his life as an award-winning crime solver. But still, his toughest challenge yet is getting his new assistant, Rat, to go to school.

One day, while having the same old argument, a young girl about Rat's age, who calls herself Princess Lily, appears on their doorstep. She tells them that her school--Merlin's Institute for the Knowledge of Everything--is being haunted by a ghost in glowing armor. Her father, Prince Balto, fought the ghost last night, and now he's trapped in a deep sleep. Lily says that she wants to hire Humpty to solve the mystery.

Humpty and Rat follow Lily back to her school, which is actually Merlin's castle, transported all the way from England. After some trouble getting past the guards, the group barges into Merlin's office, where Merlin denies all of Lily's claims.

Out of ideas, Humpty tells Merlin that they've come to enroll Rat in the school. Merlin says no, absolutely not, since the boy is obviously not royalty. But then, the legendary sword of King Arthur, which Merlin keeps in his office to await the return of the king, begins to glow. Although Rat cannot draw the sword from its stone prison, Merlin is now convinced that Rat must be the reincarnated King Arthur!

Full of strange occurrences, mystical history, and a surprise ending that puts a new spin on the King Arthur legend, this book is for any child who loves to laugh. The whacky situations and hysterical illustrations definitely make this egg-cellent series one that you will not want to miss! ( )
  GeniusJen | Oct 12, 2009 |
As in the first book, chaos ensues whenever Humpty Dumpty, Jr. attempts to use his egg-beater magic wand, providing a lot of laughs. When the identity of the ghost is revealed, there's another action scene that made it impossible for us to put the book down. And it's hard to put into words how wonderful the illustrations are, perfectly portraying the action and including little details that make the characters come to life.

Full review on Diary of an Eccentric ( )
  annaeccentric | Jul 17, 2009 |
Humpty, Jr. is back for a second case. Of course, he's not on the case at first; no, all he wants to do is get Rat, his "faithful" sidekick, to go to school.

He won't go, not even kicking and screaming.

But then he finds out that the school he's going to is Merlin's Institute for the Knowledge of Everything, and that he might actually be the reincarnation of King Arthur (yes, that Merlin and that Arthur). Of course, the simple process of signing Rat up for school isn't so simple, and our hardboiled detective and his favorite sidekick (or should that be sidekicker?) end up involved in a real mystery involving a real magic-eating ghost!

How is Humpty going to solve this one? Who is this client, Princess Lily, really? And what does this all have to do with the Potty Mouth Gang and it's leader, Boss "Royal" Flush? Hang on for the ride, because that's what you're going to learn in this sequel to Humpty's The Case of the Fiendish Flapjack Flop. Humpty is going to have to keep his head up in this one, or the yolk really will be on him!

I've now given both of the Humpty Dumpty Jr. books to my daughter, who is in second grade. She loves them, and especially loves to read them out loud to her little brother. These are books that are made to instill a love of reading in kids; they're written so that kids will laugh, but also think. Kids want to solve the case before Humpty does, and they're given almost enough information to do that. And, as with the first book, the illustrations in this one are as enjoyable as the story itself. Get this one for the kids, and when they grow out of it, donate it to your school library. These are books that need to be read and enjoyed as much as possible. ( )
  wkelly42 | Apr 13, 2009 |
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When a ghost starts haunting Merlin's Institute for the Knowledge of Everything and demands its magic back, hard-shelled detective Humpty Dumpty, Jr. is called in to solve the case.

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