The Missing Hamster (Beatrice Bly's Rules for Spies #1)

by Sue Fliess (Author) Beth Mills (Illustrator)

A young spy in training has to put her sneaky skills to the test when the class pet goes missing in this picture book series starter perfect for readers who love the excitement and intrigue of Tara Lazar's 7 Ate 9 and Josh Funk's Mission Defrostable.

Beatrice Bly isn't just a spy.

She's a super spy.

She knows all the rules.

She sneaks. She observes.

She follows the clues to find the culprit.

But when the class hamster, Edgar, goes missing, will Beatrice's spy training be enough to find out what happened?

Clever and determined, Beatrice Bly will win over young sleuths, teaching them problem solving and deduction skills as they scramble to figure out the case alongside her.

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Kirkus Reviews

Expressive cartoon artwork depicts a contemporary school setting with a diverse population . . . Readers will be eager to see more of this spunky, confident, daring character.

Publishers Weekly

Beatrice has successfully recovered precious items ranging from a child's wizard cape to the remote control, but her biggest case so far concerns missing class hamster Edgar, who's left behind a room of mournful kids. Following a hunch that he'll go in search of food, the white-skinned protagonist tracks him into the absolutely off-limits teacher's lounge, where she finds an impressive luncheon spread and Edgar in the middle of it all, munching strawberries. But what about Beatrice--will she take the rap for going where no kid should ever go? Nope--the teacher who catches her is partly culpable for Edgar's food obsession. It's a plot straight out of the school comedy files, and Beatrice is really more private eye than spy. Yes, she wears dark glasses and slinks around--one of Fliess's (Sadie Sprocket Builds a Rocket) "Super Spy Rules" is "Be Quiet. (No Flip-Flops!)"--but like any classic detective, she also observes, deduces, follows leads, and evaluates suspects. Mills's (Ella McKeen, Kickball Queen) animation-styled illustrations, however, should pull in readers with their comic drama and jaunty spoofiness. And what school kid hasn't suspected that the teachers are having too much fun behind closed doors? Ages 4-7. Author's agent: Jennifer Unter, the Unter Agency. Illustrator's agent: Claire Easton, Painted Words. (Apr.)

Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.

Review quotes


Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Publication date
April 20, 2021
Beatrice Bly's Rules for Spies
BISAC categories
JUV019000 - Juvenile Fiction | Humorous Stories
JUV013000 - Juvenile Fiction | Family | General
JUV028000 - Juvenile Fiction | Mysteries, Espionage, & Detective Stories
Library of Congress categories
Humorous stories
Picture books
Spy stories

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