As the book opens, we meet Mango and Brash, two crime busting alligators or ‘InvestiGators.’ There follows a complex surreal story or overlapping stories in which the pair investigate the disappearance of Chef Gustavo, try to discover who has been stealing his secret recipes, find out about the strange happenings at the Science factory and who the sinister figure in the mac really is.
InvestiGators is a substantial and literally quite weighty graphic novel with thirteen chapters in full colour. The aim is to amuse and there is plenty of humour here. There are clever acronyms (eg the crime busting duo are working on a ‘S.U.I.T’ case (a Special Investigation Team case) wearing V.E.S.T.S with ‘Very Exciting Spy Technology’. The book is also packed with word play and puns, particularly during the extended sequences of banter between the two main characters. There are comic scenes too, including those illustrating Mango and Brash’s mode of travel, which is via the toilet system to their home in the sewers and scenes showing their failed attempts at disguising themselves.
For those who enjoy Mango and Brash’s capers this is the first in the series with future stories likely to further develop the InvestiGators’ encounters with archrival ‘Crackerdile’ introduced in this first adventure. The back of the book includes guidance on how to draw the main characters which might encourage young readers to create their own comic strip stories.