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Two-Minute Mysteries Collection Paperback – 2004
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There are many out there, but I felt some were above the head of a 7-8 year old or too old or too acedemically-focused.
Since I knew that Donald Sobol had written mysteries at just the right level for my son, I thought it was perfect that he had another, non-Encyclopedia Brown series.
Unfortunately, as soon as I opened it to the first story, I realized these stories are just recycled, abridged versions of the Encylopedia Brown stories! (I don't know which one came first, but they are the same mysteries, nevertheless). This was a big disappointment, as I was looking for *new* stories. As it is, I will not be reading any of these to my son because he either already knows the answers or I wouldn't want to ruin the longer Encyclopedia Brown stories we haven't read yet. So the book is essentially useless to me.
I realize my situation is probably not usual, but I thought it important to share this information with others who might want to choose between these condensed stories or the fuller Encyclopedia Brown stories.
As for the mysteries themselves, they share the same plusses and minuses as the Encyclopedia Brown stories (clever, concise, but dated and sometimes obtuse). The only difference is the stories are shorter and you get 79 of them in one book than about 9 or 10. Each story is about 1/3 to 1/4 as long as the Encyclopedia Brown stories, with an adult inspector and no illustrations.
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