Welcome to Wonderland #3: Sandapalooza Shake-Up
Life's a vacation when you live in the world's wackiest motel! P.T. and his best friend, Gloria, are getting ready for St. Pete Beach's first-ever Sandapalooza! The Wonderland's biggest rival, the Conch Reef Resort, is doing everything it can to win the sand sculpture contest, but P.T. has bigger problems: The Wonderland has opened a new restaurant--the Banana Shack--and running a restaurant is harder than it looks! And to make matters worse, a royal guest's priceless tiara has gone missing, and the prime suspect is the Wonderland's beloved housekeeper! Can P.T. and Gloria win the contest, keep the restaurant going, and clear Clara's name?
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
Grabenstein really understands how to write interesting and well-developed mysteries that are amusing and not overly complicated. There is the underlying mystery about P.T.'s missing father, which is dealt with in an interesting fashion and isn't completely solved yet. Characters from other books make an appearance, which is an interesting touch and gives us other potential suspects. The theft of a tiara is serious enough to warrant thorough investigation, but not as gruesome as a murder, and the proprietors of the Conch are always suspect!
Yes. I love the Florida motel setting, with it's kitschy decorations and goofy specials. The addition of the Banana Shack restaurant is a great addition, because tweens love to read about food! The mother and grandfather are especially great, and there is goofiness aplenty despite the realistic touches of the hotel struggling financially. Given the holiday feel of the setting, this is a great series for summer reading!
The only down side is that the title isn't quite as catchy as the previous book, Beach Party Surf Monkey.
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