BOOK REVIEW: WHACK-A-MOLE
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BY CHRIS GRABENSTEIN
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"Have A Sunny Funderful Day!" is a greeting from Sea Haven, New Jersey. Sea Haven is a quaint sea side town boosting an amusement park, tourist shops, restaurants, bars and even a little museum. John Ceepak lives above the Bagel Lagoon one of Sea Haven's shops. Danny Boyle is his side-kick. Both are employed by the Sea Haven Police Department.
Ceepak is described by Danny Boyle as 6'2", thirty-six year old Eagle-Scout-slash-jarhead which is a pretty good description. Ceepak has a strict code that he lives by and the code includes never telling a lie. It seems that Danny has grown considerably more mature since Tilt-A-Whirl and Mad Mouse and slowly is adopting at least a portion of Ceepak's codes.
Danny is without a girl friend since Katie left town but Ceepak has gotten more and more involved with Rita a local woman with a teen-age son. Danny is happy for Ceepak but the good relationship enjoyed by Ceepak and Rita only makes Danny's loneliness stand out more.
Ceepak belongs to a group called The Sea Haven Treasure Hunter Society. The treasures suddenly popping up around Sea Haven are gruesome souvenirs of someone who can only be classed as a serial killer. Ceepak and Danny race against time to find the murderer and to try and stop the killer from striking yet another victim. What starts out as a cold case suddenly turns a corner and puts the girls visiting or living in Sea Haven in jeopardy.
The line of suspects is long and includes at least one tourist as well as some of the long time residents and friends of both Ceepak and Danny.
They are really up against it this time as the treasures keep popping up much like the moles in the Whack A Mole game.
This book is one that I'm certainly glad I read. I love the characters of Ceepak and Danny and their relationship seems to grow in each of Grabenstein's books. They are turning into a pair of police officers that should not be messed with. I am already looking forward to the next book so I can learn more about Ceepak and Danny Boyle.
REVIEWED BY PATRICIA REID
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