The Mighty Muskrats are off to the city to have fun at the Exhibition Fair. But when Chickadee learns about Grandpa's little sister, who was scooped up by the government and adopted out to strangers without her parents' permission many years ago, the Mighty Muskrats have a new mystery to solve. Once in the bright lights of the big city, the cousins get distracted, face off with bullies, meet some heroes and unlikely teachers, and learn many of the difficulties of life in the city, as well as hard truths about their country’s treatment of First Nations people.
Kirkus Reviews Review Issue Date: February 1, 2010 Online Publish Date: January 12, 2020
The Mighty Muskrats, four mystery-solving cousins from Windy Lake First Nation in Canada, find themselves in the big city searching for a relative who went missing decades ago.Tech-savvy Chickadee and her cousins—muscled Atim, bookworm Samuel, and guitar-strumming Otter—travel to the city for a week of fun at the Exhibition Fair. When Chickadee tells them about Great-Auntie Charlotte, Grandpa's little sister who was "scooped" to a residential school before being adopted out by the government, the group decides to make finding her their next mission. But the lure of the fair, an opportunity to see a favorite rock star in concert, and a chance encounter with an old friend from the rez split the team's priorities, taking them in different directions and threatening the case. Unless they regroup, they may never cut through the red tape and uncover what happened to Charlotte. Though the harsh realities of Canada's historical treatment of First Nations are central to the plot, the complexities of the subject matter are age-appropriate and easily digestible. Fans of Hutchinson's (Misipawistik Cree) first entry in his Mighty Muskrats Mystery Series, The Case of Windy Lake (2019), will eagerly join the crew once again while all the twists and turns one expects from a good mystery will quickly hook new readers.A compelling "urban bush" adventure that offers light and reconciliation to dark truths. (Mystery. 9-12)
How often have you read a middle grade mystery novel that had you in tears just a few pages after making you laugh? ... Missing Auntie is a good read, with an emotional punch, and I can hardly wait for the Mighty Muskrats to take their next case.