Cover image for Mystery mansion : a look again book
Mystery mansion : a look again book
Garland, Michael, 1952-
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Dutton Children's Books, 2001.
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 27 cm
When Tommy goes to visit his Aunt Jeanne at her mansion, he finds a series of notes that are clues to an unnamed puzzle meant to be solved by Tommy and the reader.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR LG 3.7 0.5 52575.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Central Library PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Childrens Area-Picture Books
Collins Library PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
Kenilworth Library PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
Kenmore Library PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
Lackawanna Library PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
Frank E. Merriweather Library PIC. BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
Frank E. Merriweather Library PIC. BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
Anna M. Reinstein Library PIC.BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books

On Order



With its suspenseful treasure-hunt plot, this sparkling picture book offers amazing hidden pictures and intriguing clues that lead to a surprise ending. Tommy has received an invitation from Aunt Jeanne, but when he arrives at her Victorian mansion, she is nowhere to be found. Instead, he discovers rhyming clues that guide him through the different rooms-each of them more surreal and enchanting than the last. Lizards scamper through the parlor, the greenhouse swirls with butterflies, an underground tunnel teems with bats-and more! Fans of the I Spy and Look-Alikes series will delight in poring over the scenes to find and count over 400 camouflaged animals. Older readers may also spot the hidden letters. When unscrambled, they spell a message that reveals the wonderful surprise Tommy's aunt has in store: a magical birthday party! Infused with extravagant detail, Michael Garland's illustrations will keep eagle-eyed readers busy for a long time before the last creature has been found and the last puzzle solved.

Author Notes

Author and illustrator Michael Garland was born in Manhattan in 1952. He studied art at Pratt Institute and soon after graduating, he sold his first illustration to True Confessions magazine. He has written or illustrated over 40 books.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

Garland (An Elf for Christmas) fashions his computer-generated artwork into a visual puzzler leading to a surprise birthday party. After receiving an invitation from his eccentric Aunt Jeanne, Tommy finds successive notes that lead him through her mansion, into a maze in the garden and finally to cake and guests. Readers are invited along for the ride from the start (Aunt Jeanne's letter instructs them to "Take a pencil and paper/ And carefully look./ Make a list of the things/ That you find in this book"). The rhymes may be forced, but the hunt is the main draw. Garland hides several hundred objects in the illustrations, from butterflies, bats, frogs and more in the statuary and shrubbery, to letters that spell out clues. The surreal quality of Garland's digital illustrations works well here, allowing for an abundance of repetitive elements and lush layering of wallpapers, textiles and so on that play up the trompe l'oeil effect. Heightening the game is the fun-loving Aunt Jeanne herself, hiding in each display. An afterword provides a checklist of all the hidden items. Ages 5-11. (July) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

Gr 2-4-Children who enjoy poring over crowded pictures and cataloging details will have a ball with this new offering from the creator of Dinner at Magritte's (Viking, 2001)-though only the truly indefatigable may be able to stay the course. Directed by a series of rhymed notes from his mysterious Aunt Jeanne, young Tommy undertakes a tour of her palatial house and gardens, passing hints and visual clues that he will have a surprise birthday party at the end. The big, brightly patterned rooms and locales he traverses are positively encrusted with small animals (more than 400, according to the itemized list at the end), plus hidden words, a trio of magical creatures, and often a concealed Aunt Jeanne watching his progress with a smile. Garland doesn't try very hard to camouflage this plethora of birds, butterflies, reptiles, and other creatures, but even young detectors trained on Ruth Brown's If at First You Do Not See (Holt, 1995) or Walter Wick's dazzling photographs for the "I Spy" series (Scholastic) will find keeping a running tally, then matching it to the author's, a tempting challenge.-John Peters, New York Public Library (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Google Preview