Real pigeons fight crime by Andrew McDonald and Ben Wood

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This is a special 3D Coo-llector's edition of the first book in the Real Pigeons series (originally published 2018), which currently boasts ten titles. A holographic cover and some drawing and activity pages at the back provide some extras on the original. For the uninitiated, the Real Pigeons are a team of diverse pigeons named after real pigeons and featuring unique attributes. Rock Pigeon is good at blending in so is constantly in ridiculous disguises. Frillback Pigeon is covered in curly feathers and is super strong (after eating sausages). Tumbler Pigeon somersaults while in flight and is super bendy, Homing Pigeon always returns so is great with directions and Pouter Pigeon (Grandpouter in the story) is the leader of the pack. 

There are three parts or separate mysteries to each book, but they are generally connected by the end. This one includes The Great Breadcrumb Mystery, The Bat Trapper and Danger at the Food Truck Fair. Humorous and detailed black and white illustrations are interspersed throughout. Simple, matter-of-fact writing and added dialogue in the pictures gives Real Pigeons a faced-paced and comical flair. This first book in the series shows Grandpouter recruiting the pigeons to form his squad of crime-fighting pigeons because 'Pigeons are perfect for fighting crime. We are everywhere. We are fast. And we can attack.' Their first mystery is why there are no breadcrumbs in the park (clearly a problem for pigeons) and behind each of the mysteries is a criminal animal seeking power or glory. It's a real battle of the city animals and their humorous characterisation. Humans feature only as part players. 

This is such a funny series with plenty of word play, hillarious visuals and graphic dialogue. They are not the smartest of super sleuths and while they are usually trying to work together, everything is a little silly and chaotic rather than well-designed problem solving. Fans of Bad GuysInvestigators and the Treehouse series will be instant fans as will those who like quirky humour and rollicking fun in their reading material.

Themes: Humorous stories, Mysteries, Pigeons.

Nicole Nelson