A Gangster Stole My Trunks by Tom Vaughan

Written by Tom Vaughan, Illustrations by Nathan Reed, Publishing with Scholastic on 7.7.22

This is a bonkers yet brilliant story of cat burglars, grand necklaces and heists gone wrong all while sailing the Norwegian fjords. Jesse and his gramps find themselves winners of a competition for a week long cruise. A great chance for them to catch up, get to know each other and see some sights. Boarding the ancient ship, there are a few surprises in store for them both.

For one, the ship itself it old and named Tom Cruise. There is rust, broken panels and an ancient slide. Second, it is filled with pensioners and thirdly, it seems that some extra secrets are to be revealed about gramps true job.

Jesse is less than thrilled to be going on this cruise but it did get him out of math camp and the awkward discussions his parents are planning about their D.I.V.O.R.C.E, a word Jesse can’t even speak aloud. What happens in the course of the week is eventful, thrilling and proof that Jesse can handle anything life throws at him.

A gang of former thieves is on board and gramps is sure there is more to the story. As a former MI6 agent, he has put most of these oldies behind bars at least once in his career. Jesse has a nose for mysteries and plans to get to the bottom of this cruise along with new friend Wendell. Wendell is on the cruise with his grandmother.

Heists, plots and murder take centre stage on this adventure with gramps, Jesse, Wendell and Perkins, gramps old assistant forming a team to solve the crimes.

With a cast of brilliantly bonkers oap’s this is one adventure you don’t want to miss. A particular favourite is Ms Ho-Renton and her arsenal of weapons and technology (for good not evil, since she has turned away from crime). This would make for an epic animated series with this amazing cast being brought to life.

As I was reading, I couldn’t help but imagine voices and accents of the former gangsters. What a fun read aloud this would be for a class of super sleuths.

Publishing on 7.7.2022!

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