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Summary: Joe Hardy hits a homerun, the Bayport Bandits win the Little League World Series. It's all up to Joe ... at least in his dream. At the REAL Little League World Series there are bigger problems: according to Jason, their star player, one of the Johnston Jupiter players stole it. While everyone is in a rush to blame the other, Joe and Frank Hardy head to the bleachers to work through the clues. Can they find Jason's mitt in time for the game? This is an updated series of the original Hardy Boys designed for transitional readers.
Type of Reading: bedtime story, family reading, anytime reading, independent reading, read aloud book, reluctant reader
Recommended Age: read together: 6 to 9; read yourself: 8 to 10
Interest Level: 7 to 10
Age of Child: Read by a 9-year-old girl.
Young Reader Reaction: We were surprised at how quickly our daughter read this one. We never knew she had an interest in baseball! She asked a lot of questions about specific types of plays (infield fly rule) and devoured it in one night.
Adult Reader Reaction: This is a light, easy read. A missing mitt and baseball are at the center of the story, but there is a lot more to it. Short chapters, wide-set type with lots of white space, and some larger illustrations will make this appealing to kids just moving to chapter books.
Pros: Baseball is the centerpiece of this mystery that also offers lessons in sportsmanship, jumping to conclusions, and friendship.
Borrow or Buy: Borrow. This is a quick read but once the case is solved, kids will want to move on. The plot isn't so intricate that you'd re-read it to find more details.
Educational Themes: There are several lessons to be drawn and very specific points that you can stop to discuss issues or predict events: when Jason accuses the other team of stealing his mitt; when Frank and Joe get distracted by a dog going to practice; and thinking through problems.
Notes: A Reading Tub® volunteer submitted this review. This is from her personal library.
Literary Categories: Fiction - mystery, sports, baseball, series book
Date(s) Reviewed: May 2011
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