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Detective Gordon: The First Case (Detective Gordon, #1)
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Detective Gordon: The First Case

(Kommissarie Gordon #1)

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  525 ratings  ·  137 reviews
Someone's stealing nuts from the forest, and it's up to Detective Gordon to catch the thief! Unfortunately, solving this crime means standing in the snow and waiting for a long time... If only he had an assistant?someone small, fast, and clever?to help solve this terrible case. ...more
Hardcover, 96 pages
Published March 1st 2015 by Gecko Press (first published January 1st 2012)
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Average rating 3.85  · 
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 ·  525 ratings  ·  137 reviews

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Anna Mussmann
Jul 17, 2019 rated it liked it
On the one hand, this is a cute little mystery about forest animals. On the other, it presents the mentality of Nordic-style socialism to kids. It’s written by a popular Swedish children’s author, and the liberal Scandinavian outlook is interesting to see.

The plot is centered around a theft. However, the detective--who happens to be a frog--eschews traditional police behavior. “We must have a forest where everyone is happy,” he says; and he makes it clear he does not believe in punishing indivi
May 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
What a charming piece of Scandinavian crime fiction for children! I love it when animals have professions. Bonus points b/c the crime fighting team is a young spunky mouse and an old toad who really would rather be drinking tea and eating his night cakes.
Jan 12, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-aloud-john, 2021
A charming read aloud with my 7-year-old son. I was impressed that the author included many of the details I love from adult mysteries (the detective partnership, following clues, the sense of escalating crime) into a gentle children's book. I will definitely get my son more books from this series to read. ...more
Abby Johnson
Dec 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
This charming little mystery reminded me of The Wind in the Willows. When a squirrel's nuts go missing one winter, Detective Gordon is on the case. He's not as spry as he used to be, but he's very thoughtful and knowledgeable, and soon he has a young assistant to help with fieldwork. Together, Gordon and Buffy collect evidence, interrogate suspects, and solve their first case!

This gentle mystery would be a good choice for young kids reading at higher levels or for anyone who enjoys animal storie
Apr 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
Detective Gordon: The First Case, is a charming story of a thoughtful and experienced toad detective as he uses his precise and methodical skills to keep harmony in his forest. In the midst of solving the case of the squirrel's stolen nuts, Detective Gordon displays compassion and intelligence by hiring a young assistant to learn investigative skills and help him with the legwork which is tiring for an elderly toad. The books illustrations give the reader insight into the characters personality ...more
Jan 27, 2020 rated it liked it
Pure fun nonsense. Toad/Gordon is the detective and recruits mouse/Buffy to be his police assistant. The way they catch the thieves is clever. Although a chapter book for the younger set, the vocabulary is quite high. Enjoyable. One in a series of four.
Tim Robinson
Feb 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-mystery
Detective Gordon has a refreshingly original approach to policing. Those in genuine need may help themselves to private property, violence is never an option and he disapproves of punishment. If there is such a thing as an Anarchist policeman, Gordon is it!
The Bookshop Umina
A cute Scandinavian illustrated chapter book. Our kids book club read it and thoroughly enjoyed it.

They rated it out of 10 and gave it:
6.5/10, 10.5,9.5/10
Wayne McCoy
Jan 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens
Scandinavian crime fiction has never been more charming than it is 'Detective Gordon: The First Case' by Ulf Nilsson. This early reader book left me with a huge smile on my face.

In an icy woods, there is a thief afoot. Someone is stealing nuts from Squirrel, and his only hope is to enlist the help of Detective Gordon, a frog with a penchant for cakes and the sound of paper being stamped with a 'ka-chunk.' The case is difficult and with a lot of standing in the cold, Detective Gordon finds that h
Dec 07, 2015 rated it really liked it

Many nuts have been stolen from Vladimir, the squirrel, and Detective and Police Chief Gordon has to solve the case. In the process, which includes a lot of thinking, stamping and cake eating, he meets Buffy, a young mouse who becomes his assistant and friend. While Buffy wishes for many exciting cases to solve, Gordon, as the old and wise toad he is, wishes for a quite district with no crime at all. No crime. No punishment.

The first case is a cozy mystery for kids, with adorable characters and
Rachel Day
Apr 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I just happened upon this children's book because I love a mystery....generally adult mysteries. However, on my way out of the library while walking past the children's section, my eyes spotted it, and I'm so glad they did. This book was wonderful! Written with sensitivity and humor that both children, and dare I say, adults, will enjoy reading. There's so many life lessons being taught within the 90 pages of this book, I don't know where to begin. Not wanting to spoil the plot or ending, let's ...more
Dec 31, 2015 rated it liked it
A cute simple read but not really a mystery book. good for 7yo children or top be read at night time, add the chapters are short and illustrations are beautiful. I how there's other books in this series. ...more
Ollie Reeder
Aug 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-and-ya
For fans of Nate the Great.
Just spent a few weeks reading this to my first grade classes. They very much appreciated the characterizations and trying to solve the case along with Buffy and Detective Gordon.
Julie Kriz
This is a simple but charming story of a reluctant Police Chief, who is also an old toad. Together with his lively sidekick, who is also a young mouse, they solve the mystery of who stole the nuts from Squirrel's tree. Will they find the culprit in between their breaks for tea and cake? If they do, will the thief be punished? It's the perfect story for those advanced first and second grade readers, those who are ready to try a longer read (this one is 91 pages), but are not yet ready for more co ...more
Oct 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
More or less a children's book.

Detective Gordon is a toad and Chief of Police in the forest. He is slowing down and so, when he catches a small mouse who is stealing because she is faint from hunger, he ‘hires’ her as a policewoman and assistant to him. Together, they solve the case of who has stolen the squirrel’s 204 nuts.

To get away from the police, the culprits board themselves into a hole in a tree and throw the nuts out because mouse is taunting them. Detective Gordon is pleased because th
Amber Myers
Apr 07, 2021 rated it it was amazing
We put this book in our 7 year olds' Easter basket after reading reviews stating that it didn't shy away from large vocabulary words and that it was a good choice for fans of Frog and Toad.

This book is a delightful read, and a rare find, as chapter books with lovely pictures that don't talk down to the reader aren't common in children's literature. We also really appreciate the emphasis on loving one's neighbor in need over the pursuit of justice for justice's sake. This is one that will be read
Amanda Harrison
Jan 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Don't be fooled by the small size of this book or the extra white space on the pages, this book packs a powerful philosophical punch. How should crimes be punished? What is the role of prison? Quite a lot of conversations that could arise.

Kids so often see the world in black and white, good guys and bad guys. This one is an age appropriate way to help them see more grey.

And also make them hungry for teacakes.
Anastasia Tuckness
I came across these books when they won the best translated book one year, and I love them dearly. Detective Gordon is an old toad who has solely policed the forest for years, and eventually decides to induct a mouse onto the force as well. Together they solve mysteries of missing clothing and stolen nuts, and retire to the station to eat cake each day (a different kind for each time of day). The pace is soothing yet interesting and especially delightful for animal lovers.
Nov 01, 2018 rated it liked it
I read this one to my 4 year old daughter who loved the animal characters, in particular Buffy the mouse.

The real thieves were not revealed until the last few pages of the book which kept my daughter interested and engaged over the 4 nights we read the book.

My only gripe was the occasional odd choice of wording and strange sentence forms, however I suspect this might have been due to translation issues between Swedish-English.
Feb 07, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: lower-elem
2nd - 3rd grade readers
Detective Gordon is the Chief of Police in the forest. Someone is stealing all the nuts and the squirrels, etc. are up in arms. He catches a very small mouse taking a nut on his first night's stakeout. She saves him and becomes his assistant policewoman. And, of course, they solve the case.
Subtle humor throughout. Readers will enjoy guessing "who done it."
Allison Turkish
Mar 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: chapter-books
My children (ages 5 and 7) love this book series. The main characters, Detective Gordon and Buffy, are relatable, considerate, and thoughtful. The stories are engaging. In fact, after we finished all four books, my children spent a good amount of time "playing" Detective Gordon. They dressed up and pretended to stamp papers just like the characters. ...more
Jul 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Read this to my five year old son. He didn't want me to stop. Read it from start to finish in one day. Super cute little detective story translated from Swedish I believe. Sweet loveable characters. Looking forward to what comes next in A Complicated Case book #2. ...more
Beth Anne
Dec 10, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-aloud, 2019
Read aloud to Emma and Will. This was short and somewhat funny, but also a little lost in translation at times (originally written in Swedish I believe). We enjoyed it, but won’t continue with the series most likely.
Jun 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Not the sort of book my class would choose from the cover but they really enjoyed it. It was good to introduce them to a different style of reading.
Aug 11, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: chapter-books
It was kind of cute. Thought I would like it more.
Sep 19, 2017 rated it liked it
It's very silly; the nuts were stolen and he [the squirrel] said "that was the thief alright." ...more
Oct 15, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: kids, pre-chapter
The cone pts and vocabulary was too advanced for my first grader.
Jill Cd
Nov 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
I loved this quaint little story that could be a fun read aloud for grades 1-3.
Dec 25, 2017 rated it liked it
A nice, short chapter book for young mystery lovers. Detective Gordon and his assistant, Buffy, solve the mystery of the missing nuts.
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Ulf Nilsson is a prolific author, who's written over 100 books and received many awards, including the August and American Batchelder awards. ...more

Other books in the series

Kommissarie Gordon (4 books)
  • Detective Gordon: A complicated case (Detective Gordon, #2)
  • Detective Gordon: A Case in Any Case (Detective Gordon, #3)
  • Detective Gordon: A Case for Buffy (Detective Gordon, #4)

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