Today’s review is kind of a response to a reader request on Facebook – thanks, Madeline! We discovered Graeme Base books several years ago through my mother (of course). I have mentioned before how most of our favorite picture books come from her recommendations.
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My mom stumbled across Animalia at the library and knew that Liam would enjoy it. So, off we went to our library, picked up a copy, and we have been fans of Graeme Base ever since.
His books have very beautiful, detailed illustrations and usually some kind of puzzle. No surprise that the boys really enjoy his books, but the girls like the illustrations as well.
Liam’s favorite Graeme Base book is The Eleventh Hour: A Curious Mystery. In it, Horace (an elephant) is turning 11, and he decides to have a grand party. He invites his friends to a party where there will be eleven different foods to eat and eleven games to play.
The guests want to start by eating the food first, but Horace says they must play games until the eleventh hour. At the eleventh hour, the animals are horrified to discover that someone has eaten up the food. The story ends with Horace serving sandwiches and cake – and a challenge to the reader to figure out the mystery of who stole the food.
There are sealed pages at the back of the book that give the answer, but all of the clues are hidden in the intricate illustrations, so please try hard to solve the mystery without giving up! It’s similar to The Red Herring Mystery, but Liam likes The Eleventh Hour a little more.
Here’s what Liam has to say about this book:
If you’d like to pick up a Graeme Base book, I’m sure your local bookstore carries some, but if you are already planning an Amazon order, would you please use our link? It won’t cost you extra and it helps us out a little. Thanks so much!