Agent Q, or the Smell of Danger!: A Pals in Peril Tale

By M. T. Anderson [LibraryThingGoodreads]

Having saved the monastery of Vbngoom from certain destruction, all Lily, Katie, and Jasper want to do is head home. But the despotic government of Delaware is none too eager to let these troublesome children past the state borders, and the Ministry of Silence has eyes everywhere. With the help of the monks of Vbngoom, our heroes desperately struggle towards the New Jersey border, but there’s a spy among their party…

Aside from my recent conflicted screed on Immortal Beloved, I feel like I’ve had a lot of really short reviews lately that have just said “This book is so great! You should read it!” Unfortunately, here comes another one:

Agent Q, or the Smell of Danger! is so great! You should read it!

Seriously, that’s really all I have to say. I’ve talked about this weird little series before at length (it seems to have been firmly branded as “Pals in Peril” now, as the first two books have been re-released under that banner); it’s goofy and gleefully metatextual and kind of melancholy in places, and I really love it a lot. This particular volume is another fast-paced, silly adventure that made me laugh out loud in multiple places, and as such is a worthy addition to the series. I’m already chomping at the bit to read the next one, not just because I love these books, but because Anderson appears to be stringing together a more continuous narrative, and I want to find out what happens next.

Agent Q wasn’t perfect – Anderson has set up a love triangle, and while it’s very low-key (these kids are in middle school, after all) and the characters aren’t behaving like jerks about it, I really despise love triangles. And this book failed to tug on the heartstrings the way The Clue of the Linoleum Lederhosen and Jasper Dash and the Flame-Pits of Delaware did. But it’s still really, really fun.

Agent Q, or the Smell of Danger! (I love writing out that title) gets four and a half cupcakes. These books aren’t for everyone, but they are definitely for me, and I can’t wait for the next one.

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