Timmy Failure is a detective. He is also an enigmatic elementary school pupil. He lives with his mum and his business partner – a 243lb polar bear, called Total. Together, they make up Total Failure Inc. and they are destined for greatness.
Timmy accepts that it can be hard solving all of the world’s problems when one’s mode of transport is a less than useful robotic vacuum cleaner. He instead focuses his attention on the very important matter of discovering the location of the ‘Miracle Report’ – a legendary nature study that scored an unfeasible A+++++++ and may be the solution to keeping Principal Scrimshaw from expelling Timmy from school… again.
Resilience is essential as Timmy’s plans are repeatedly interrupted by curveballs in the shape of unwanted female attention, unhelpfully chirpy school mascots, and actual curveballs from his baseball coach. Yet Timmy refuses to allow anything or anyone to sabotage his journey towards greatness and his self-belief is impressive as well as infectious.
In this episode, Timmy’s classmates become increasingly significant (the boy who hides objects in his nostrils is especially funny!) and the importance of friendship is a lesson delivered sensitively and emotionally in an exciting climax featuring child-eating Chihuahua dogs! Fans of espionage may be a little disappointed that Timmy doesn’t allow more time for detective work. Instead, Pastis’s cast of cartoon characters make a series of blunders that result in the closure of this particular case. As in previous Timmy Failure books, Pastis’s ingenious, line-drawn illustrations provide comedy throughout and will appeal particularly to younger readers. With a wide range of charming characters and a hero with a relentless sense for adventure, it is likely that this hilarious series will run and run.