Mr. Wolf's Class: Mystery Club by Aaron Nels Steinke, 160 pp, RL 3
Mr. Wolf's Class: Mystery Club
Purchased from Barnes & Noble
I reviewed Mr. Wolf's Class this summer and LOVED it. With my annual book buying budget, I purchased four library bound copies in September and they are ALWAYS checked out! I also made sure my kids knew that a second book in the series was coming. Almost every day since then, I have told them that it's coming out on February 26, 2019 and they will have to wait a few days before I have it in the library. I had to repeatedly show students the tracking information for the order... We all agree, Mr. Wolf's Class: Mystery Club was worth the wait and every bit as amazing as the first book in what we hope is a long running series.
In this second book, Steinke, a fifth grade teacher in Portland, Oregon, once again hones in on the quirks, foibles and fascinations of school age kids with superb authenticity. In the first chapter, "You're Invited," Randy, a pink cat with a passion for surveys and venn diagrams, brings invitations to her birthday party that she wants to hand out immediately. After making sure she has one for each student in the class, Mr. Wolf sends her to the office for a tardy slip because she was late to school. Over the course of several panels, Steinke shows her circuitous path to the office, which totally cracked me up.
Mystery Club culminates with Randy's party, which she has at Intergalactic Pizza Castle, a waaaaayyyyy cooler version of Chuck E. Cheese's that serves sushi pizza, spaghetti pizza, s'mores pizza and more. Along the way to the party, Randy and her friends form a club to solve mysteries, like what happened to Mr. Greens, their teacher from last year who did not return, where is Aziza's Hello Puppy frisbee that disappeared last year and IS the girl's bathroom haunted? Meanwhile, Oscar worries about not having money to buy Randy a birthday gift, Adbi has trouble keeping the soccer ball he got to school from getting lost or confiscated, and the kids beg Mr. Wolf to see if they can get lockers like the other classes. Their cubbies are just too small.
Once again, Steinke delivers a fantastic story that rings true. His characters are all kind to each other, while also possessing the self-absorbed qualities that kids often have. It is great to get a closer look into the lives of characters from the first book and learn new things about them (Mr. Wolf is a dad!) and my students and I look forward to getting to know more characters in the next book!
Coming later this year...