The Derek ‘Danger’ Dale books are a spin-off series from the team who created the popular Eric Vale (epic fail) books, but this time pitched at readers 8 years +. Using the super engaging (and fashionable!) combination of quirky fonts and comic illustrations, young readers (especially boys) will be hooked to these ridiculous tales of mystery and adventure. Hayden, aged 10, is an avid reader with a great sense of humour. I asked him what he thought about Secret Agent Derek ‘Danger’ Dale and the Case of the Really, REALLY Scary Things.
Secret Agent Derek ‘Danger’ Dale and the Case of the Really, REALLY Scary Things by Michael Gerard Bauer and Joe Bauer
Scholastic RRP: $12.99
For starters, Hayden thought this book was easy to read – in fact, he raced through it. He found the writing very funny, and thought the comic-strip style pictures added even more to the humour. Overall, it was a really enjoyable, light read for someone Hayden’s age.
As the title suggests, this is a series about secret agents and evil genii. In a tradition that stretches back to the likes of Get Smart, Derek ‘Danger’ Dale is the world’s ‘best’ secret agent (in his own mind, anyway) and must tackle madcap physical and emotional challenges to solve each case. Hayden named Dale’s bumbling efforts in the ‘terrifying’ challenge known as the Four Rooms of Getting Scarier and Scarier as one of the funniest parts of the book. Dale is the man who put the ‘fool’ in foolhardy and the ‘fail’ in failsafe, according to the hilarious online trailer for the series. Check it out here…
According to Hayden, all boys would secretly like to have a crack at being a secret agent. This is what makes the series ideal for his age group – they can see themselves solving cases and generally getting up to mischief. Hayden enjoyed waiting to see what Derek would do next!
Some readers will pick up this series knowing it’s a spin off from previous books by Australian father/son writer/illustrator team Michael Gerard Bauer and Joe Bauer. Hayden, however, had not read any of the other books and still understood and enjoyed this one. It seems each adventure can be read alone, without the need to read the whole series, although Hayden said he was keen to read more of the Bauers’ work now that he’s discovered Derek.
Read more reviews for kids BY kids here.