Colleen's Reviews > The Clue of the Linoleum Lederhosen: M. T. Anderson's Thrilling Tales

The Clue of the Linoleum Lederhosen by M.T. Anderson
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's review
Jul 27, 2009

bookshelves: absolute-worst-books-i-have-ever-re, kids-books
Read in September, 2009

I just don't have one good thing to say about this book. It was terrible! Who on earth was this written for? Yeah, I get what he was trying to do--poke fun at mystery series like The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew. But why would today's kids be interested in that? I think they would read expressions like "Good gravy!" and "Yowza!" and "That's the ticket!" and "Jeepers-to-crow!" and roll their eyes. Those expressions are dated and not funny. And kids will not get the references to the series. And speaking of funny (or NOT funny, as in this case), the author tries way too hard to be witty and glib. It comes across as very forced. Let's move on to plot. If there was one, I completely missed it. The story hops all over the place and makes no sense. The characters? I couldn't keep track of them and I didn't care. They did not engage me and I stopped trying to remember who was who. The only memorable character was Dr. Schmeltzer, a man who thought he was a bat. (He screams while trying to find his way around. He thinks it's echolocation. I couldn't hear the screaming but I was ready to scream just reading about his screaming.) And he was only memorable because he was creepy. The lengthy passages about Jasper's snot building up and threatening to suffocate him were just pandering to adults' belief that kids won't read a book unless it has descriptions of bodily fluids and functions in it. This book has been compared to the Lemony Snicket series which I also didn't care for so maybe this just isn't my kind of book. I fail to see why kids would like this though. I couldn't wait for it to be over; I only continued reading to see what a poorly written children's book was like. So I'm very disappointed that the children's publishing industry chose to publish this (and two more!). And I was surprised to learn that the author won a National Book Award for a previous children's book. Maybe I'm out of touch with what kids want to read these days.

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