Newest in her ‘Napoleonic Spy’ series, Lauren Willig turns her attention to the arch-villain of her previous novels, the roguish Lord Vaughn. Lord Vaughn has, until now, been something of an enigma. He is one of the aristocratic set, but not particularly caught up in the national fervour that has everyone wondering the secret identities of the Scarlet Pimpernel, the Pink Carnation and the Black Tulip. However, this may be because he actually knows the identities behind these shadowy figures – all except for the nefarious Black Tulip. The Pink Carnation seeks Lord Vaughn’s help in drawing out the Black Tulip, and he in turn ropes in a young acquaintance to help him. Mary Alsworthy (she whose sister accidentally made off with her fiancée in Willig’s last novel The Deception of the Emerald Ring), is more than happy to do a little spying, for the right price. Could it be that Lord Vaughn has met his match in the black-haired beauty? For those interested in the high romantic adventure of the Georgian period, this series is a delight.
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Jacqueline Winspear returns with a fifth novel starring the introspective heroine, Maisie Dobbs. Set in England in the years following the Great War, Maisie is a rarity. A former servant whose thirst and capacity for knowledge garnered the respect of her employers, Maisie rose above her station, studied with one of the finest minds in England, served as a nurse on the front lines in France, and survived the war, but not without scars both internal and external. Putting her studies to good use, Maisie opened her own investigative service, and uses her skills of perception and detection to solve some unusually complex problems. With each passing novel a little more of Maisie’s character is tantalizingly revealed, and in An Incomplete Revenge, we learn that Maisie’s powers of observation may have much deeper roots than were developed in her studies. As she investigates some petty crimes and arson in picturesque Kent, she discovers that a profound shadow of the Great War hangs over one village in particular, and Maisie acquires some unusual allies - with similar powers of observation – while attempting to solve their malaise. The Maisie Dobbs series will be enjoyed by those who like a great deal of atmosphere and reflection in their mysteries.

When it comes to animals, there are many, many things that one should not do … such as going to a movie with a tall giraffe, sitting next to a prickly porcupine, holding hands with a lobster, buying shoes for a centipede or “sharing” a lunch with a pig. It would be silly to attempt to knit a hat for a moose with antlers, and it wouldn’t be at all kind to take a hungry goat to the library. Most of all, however, one should never, never take a shark to the dentist!
Children will have lots of fun with this story whether they are sharing it with an adult or reading it aloud to a younger sibling.
Judi Barrett is the author of many well-loved children’s picture books, such as Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and Animals Should Definitely Not Wear Clothing.
** Recommended for ages 3 to 6 years of age.

In the latest title of Roy MacGregor’s best-selling Screech Owls series, the hockey team from the small town of Tamarack is visiting Ottawa to participate in the world’s largest minor league hockey tournament, involving more than 500 teams from around the world. The Screech Owls will be playing in the very arena where Wayne Gretzky played his last game in Canada, and the Canadian Prime Minister and a number of other world leaders plan to attend.
However, the Screech Owls encounter much more than hockey in Ottawa. They become involved in some serious mystery and even some terrorism when a diabolical mastermind, calling himself “1 / 1”, has a goal of his own in mind for the Bell Capital Cup Tournament!
The 21 titles of the Screech Owls Series, which combine lots of fast-paced hockey action with mystery, danger and suspense, continue to be popular with boys. Canadian author Roy MacGregor is the author of many hockey books and is also a columnist for the Toronto Globe and Mail.
** Recommended for ages 9 to 13 years of age.
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