“Classroom dynamics and a diverse cast add a realistic element to this fast-paced tale of go-go dancing, rapid bilingual alphabetization, and general mayhem.” — Booklist
When the third-graders of Room 11 learn that they all must take part in a musicale, Smashie can’t wait to sing something heartfelt and loud. But the others are not so eager. Luckily, Charlene’s mom has agreed to donate her special gel that lengthens and sculpts hair into shapes, and soon, with the help of some retro sixties go-go dancing, all the kids are raring to go. That is, until their jars of goop go missing! Time for Smashie and her best friend, Dontel, to put on their Investigation Suits. . . . Discussions of motives and perps, hasty misaccusations and apology brownies, a math lesson used to crack a mysterious code, and a few choice red herrings build up to a truly hilarious madcap finale.
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The story is paced well, and the plot is strong enough to intrigue a variety of readers...the series offers positive lessons and activities that teachers and librarians can incorporate in the classroom. The use of mathematical codes and investigative lingo and the slight mystery will make this a good book for a beginning-of-the-year read-aloud in a third or fourth grade classroom. —School Library Journal
Classroom dynamics and a diverse cast add a realistic element to this fast-paced tale of go-go dancing, rapid bilingual alphabetization, and general mayhem. —Booklist Online
Griffin concocts a baroque plot involving a secret code credibly based on third-grade math and tells it with SAT-level vocabulary. She contextualizes that vocabulary carefully, sequencing sentences to prepare readers for it...Readers will be hoping for an equally savvy Book 3. —Kirkus Reviews