Cushman, D. (2004). Mystery at the club sandwich. New York, NY: Clarion Books.
Summary: Nick Trunk is a private eye who works for peanuts. He’s put on a case by Maggie Trouble, who works for Lola Gale, a singer at the Club Sandwich. Lola has lost her lucky marbles. Nick has to follow the clues, which consist of an ostrich feather and expensive peanut butter in the form of a smudge on the door and an empty jar, and interview the suspects, which include a mediocre magician, the chef, and Maggie. After spending an evening at the pier watching fisherman do what they do best, Nick solves the case by rounding up all the suspects into one room.
Impressions: As soon as the clues were given, it was easy to determine who the criminal was but Cushman tries to throw you off by throwing in some red herrings. The book was illustrated in black and white to fit the PI theme and was difficult to not read with that soft PI voice from the movies. I think children would find the book entertaining and have fun guessing who the real thief is.
Review: “Black and white illustrations give this mystery just the perfect setting, as Nick tries to solve who stole singer Lola’s marbles at the Club Sandwich. This elephant gumshoe is sure peanut butter and ostrich feathers are the clues he needs as he narrows down his list of suspects. Nick, of course, just works for peanuts. Full of puns that both students and adults will enjoy, teachers will find this a great book to share with students when working with a list of clues to solve a problem. It would be interesting to have students track who they think is guilty of the crime and see if they change their minds as the story progresses. The 1940s era illustrations give the reader the feeling of an old time detective story. Add it all up and this case is closed and this book is recommended.”
Manczuk, S. (2005, January). [Review of the book Mystery at the Club Sandwich, by D. Cushman]. Library Media Connection, 23(2), p. 71.
Library Uses: A mystery library program could be held – a whodunit of sorts, started off with this book – mix between “who took the cookie from the cookie jar” and “Clue” by adding clues in the library and having the children look for the clues and identifying the culprit.