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Dragon Detective: Catnapped

Updated: Feb 14

by Gareth P. Jones


If you like your crime fiction hard-boiled, your detectives smoking, and your cases intriguing, look no further! Catnapped is packed full of dodgy characters and shady dealings, although the only smoking you’ll see is the kind that comes hand-in-hand with a dragon. Because our main character, Dirk Dilly is a mountain dragon who puffs like any mountain dragon would (although he’s trying to give up).


Dirk is also proprietor of The Dragon Detective Agency. Despite the name – which is a dead giveaway – nobody actually knows he's a dragon. Travelling by roof-top and working undercover in his high-collared coat and trilby hat, he has managed to hoodwink everyone he’s come across, even his housekeeper, Mrs Klingerflim (although she is blind as a bat and mad as a badger).


He is an old-style private investigator crossed with a legendary beast – a lizard with a turn of phrase and an eye for a clue.


But let’s not get side-tracked by details, because Dirk is about to get wrapped up in a case that involves missing cats and a headstrong girl called Holly. It’s debatable whether a reclusive dragon and a girl who asks too many questions are going to get along…


“Don’t dragons have songs?”

“Oh yes, we have songs all right,” Dirk said grimly. “But for dragons, music isn’t for fun. It’s the deadliest weapon of all.”

“Oh” said Holly. “Remind me never to go to a dragon disco.”

“Very funny,” said Dirk, not sounding at all amused.


But working together on the case of the missing cats, they are drawn into world that’s stinkier than kitty litter, and will need to trust each other to survive!


I can’t and won’t give it away, but the story is super imaginative and bursting with fun. Dirk, with his hard shell and soft underbelly, is so silly (no, not silly, he hates being called silly) – is so humorous, and it’s his dialogue and a nifty little plot that will keep kids turning pages. There is plenty of comedy throughout – a funny word here, a ridiculous situation there and absurd characters absolutely everywhere – so prepare for laughter. Quickly followed by cries of delight when readers discover there be sequels. Now, everyone sing along with the utterly brilliant theme tune. Rrib-chacka-dibba do dah!




Published by Stripes Publishing

Reviewer: Rachel

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