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The Creepy Case Files of Margo Maloo is the first book in Drew Weing’s new series about a monster mediator named Margo and her sidekick, Charles. The two solve monster mysteries around Echo City, interacting with ogres, trolls, and ghosts to solve the creepy cases. The book is adapted from Drew’s web-comic series of the same name, which means we know we’re going to be getting more!
The first book opens on Charles, who has just moved to Echo City and already has a sense that something is wrong: his toys go missing, he sees shadows, and the occasional monster tries to eat him. Luckily, his new friend next door knows Margo Maloo, a monster mediator, and Charles’ life is never the same after he calls her for help with his case.
One of the most interesting aspects of the book is the fact that it’s narrated from Charles’ point of view. We see Margo through Charles’ eyes, watching as she effortlessly stands up to monsters and willfully walks into dangerous situations. But this point of view also shines a spotlight on Margo, highlighting the fact that no matter how worldly she seems, she’s still shrouded in mystery: where are her parents? How did she become a monster mediator? And exactly what darker talents (and secrets) is she hiding?
Despite the levity and wit we see in The Creepy Case Files of Margo Maloo, there is definitely intrigue: we want to know more about this monstrous world, we want to know more about Margo, and we wouldn’t mind some assurance that the two characters are well-suited to the tasks that lie ahead. There’s a sense of foreboding, indicating that the series is headed down a deeper, darker path.
The story and illustrations in The Creepy Case Files of Margo Maloo lends itself well to middle grade readers looking for something a little darker in tone. I have very high hopes for the series, and if you read the first book and are just dying to read more, definitely check out Drew’s web-comic here!