Reading Level: Ages 6 – 9
Reviewed by Kathy Davis
In Penny& Rio, The Mysterious Backyard Meeting, we meet 2 lovable dogs with distinctively different personalities. Penny is energetic and curious about every smell and sound. Rio just wants a warm place to take a nap. When Penny discovers an owl and a cat are up to something she devises a plan to spy on their conversations. She soon learns of their intentions, and comes up with her own plan to stop them from causing trouble next door. Will she succeed or will she be too late?
In the Locked Doghouse Mystery a tearful mouse enlists detective Penny’s help in getting into the old doghouse next door. Penny and Rio team up with another dog named Hobbes and the dogs keep trying new ways to get that lock off (the mouse used to live in it and has some important stuff left inside).
These cute books are great for kids who are ready for short chapter books. With a little mystery mixed together with its colorful illustrations, you may find your readers wishing to finish these books in one sitting! Dog lover or not your child will enjoy the canine antics and parents will smile when they read for themselves what a dog really means when he whines and scratches at the door. And, it’s nice to have a story that is as wholesome as these are: the books are dove family approved.
It’s interesting to note Penny & Rio are based on the author’s real family pooches of the same name. The author states her pets “brought her family great joy and were very much like the characters in the book.”
More about the author and her books: