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Undercover Bookworms

Illustrated by Santy Gutierrez

About The Book

Detective brothers Frank and Joe catch a book crook to save their library in the sixteenth book in the interactive Hardy Boys Clue Book series.

One of Frank and Joe Hardy’s favorite places to hang out is the Bayport Junior Public Library. Having a library just for kids is the best, and they love the real-life bookworm mascots, a whole farm of them! But the town council is facing budget cuts and will vote soon on whether to shut down the BJPL and combine locations with the adult library. Just when the boys’ librarian is starting to sway the council in her favor, a valuable book goes missing from the Rare Reads Room!

The Hardy brothers are determined to find the missing book and save the library. Joe pulls out a rare book of his own—the clue book! There are plenty of suspects, from the councilwoman who’s in favor of folding the junior library to their classmate Jeffrey Le Guin who was temporarily suspended from the library for making too much noise. But the more they investigate, the more they realize that you can’t judge a crook by their cover.


Chapter 1: Shhhhhhhh!

“Just one more,” eight-year-old Joe Hardy encouraged his older brother, Frank.

Joe picked up a thick volume of classic detective stories and climbed onto the step stool.

“I don’t know, Joe.” Frank’s voice quivered. So did the impossibly tall stack of books he was trying to carry through the mystery section of the Bayport Junior Public Library.

“Don’t give up now, bro.” Joe gently placed the book atop the teetering stack. “I think this is a world record.”

“I’m less worried about breaking records than returning these to the shelves so I can get to the rest of my Junior Librarian duties.” Frank took a cautious step forward. “How am I supposed to see where I’m going?”

Frank was a summer volunteer at the Bayport Junior Public Library—or BJPL for short—and he was determined to do a good job. Joe was taking a break from reading comics to help out. Sort of.

“Teamwork!” Joe said. “Just like when we solve a mystery. We’re the best kid detectives in all of Bayport. We’ve cracked some of the toughest cases in town. Putting a few books back should be a cinch. Now just follow my voice.”

“Okay,” Frank replied uncertainly from behind the swaying tower of books.

“The author of this one is Victor Appleton, so let’s head for the As.” Joe marched confidently down the aisle. “This way!”

Frank took a slow step forward. Only his foot didn’t land on the library’s worn-down carpet. It smacked right into another step stool instead. Frank fell forward, and so did the books.

“Ahhhhhh!” he cried as a tsunami of paperbacks and hardcovers swept over Joe.

“Whoops,” Joe uttered, now standing amid a messy pile of books. “I guess that last book was the mystery that broke the detectives’ stack.”

“What in the world is going on here?!” a woman’s voice demanded from the end of the aisle.

Harriet Porter had blond hair, round wire-rimmed glasses, and a BJPL T-shirt with a picture of a worm reading a book. The worm had glasses just like hers.

“I’m sorry, boss,” Frank said to the head librarian. “Joe was helping me put the returned books back, but I tried to carry too many at once.”

Harriet stared wide-eyed at the books scattered all over the floor.

Joe gave her a guilty smile. “Sorry.”

“Why are you carrying them by hand in the first place?” the librarian asked Frank.

About The Author

Franklin W. Dixon is the author of the ever-popular Hardy Boys books.

About The Illustrator

Santy Gutierrez resides in the seaside city of La Coruña, Spain. He has won acclaim as the Best Spanish Young Editorial Cartoonist and Best Galician Caricaturist, among others.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Aladdin (June 27, 2023)
  • Length: 112 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781534476868
  • Grades: 1 - 4
  • Ages: 6 - 9

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More books from this author: Franklin W. Dixon

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More books in this series: Hardy Boys Clue Book