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Children's Fiction General

Lake Monster Mix-Up

by (author) Mary Labatt

illustrated by Jo Rioux

Kids Can Press
Initial publish date
Aug 2009
General, Mysteries & Detective Stories, Dogs
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Aug 2009
    List Price
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Aug 2009
    List Price

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Where to buy it

Out of print

This edition is not currently available in bookstores. Check your local library or search for used copies at Abebooks.

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 7 to 10
  • Grade: 2 to 5


In the second book in the Sam & Friends Mystery graphic novel series, canine sleuth Sam is bored at the prospect of spending a cottage weekend at Sagawa Lake - until she hears that the lake has a deep, dark secret. This is exactly what Sam wants to hear and sure enough, with help from Jennie and Beth, Sam finds an old diary hidden in the wall of their cabin and what they read there is chilling. Is it the key to the secret of Sagawa Lake? What about the strange face painted on the rock, near the water's edge - and the creepy cave nearby? Something lurks in the depths of the lake. All they need is proof, which Sam is determined to obtain at all costs.

As always, the mystery-solving trio of Sam, Jennie and Beth blow up events to scary proportions and young graphic novel readers will furiously turn pages to reach the climax - and a surprising solution to the mystery.

About the authors

Mary Labatt is an editor and writer. She is the author of the Dog Detective Sam mystery series, the Sam and Friends graphic mystery novels, the Puppy Sam level one early readers and a novel called A Puppy is for Loving. With all these dog books you can guess what Mary does on her Clear Creek, Ontario farm. She breeds and raises Rough Collies and Welsh Springer Spaniels. In the picture you can see Mary with two of her collie mothers, Annabel and Chloe.

Mary Labatt's profile page

Jo Rioux was born and raised in Ottawa, Ontario. An artist from an early age, she was eventually drawn to children’s books, illustrating Swordquest for HarperCollins and the graphic novel series A Sam and Friends Mystery for Kids Can Press. Her love for the comic medium spurred her to author her first graphic novel series, Cat’s Cradle. She lives in the lush suburbs of her hometown, where, when not working at her drawing desk, she can be found nestled within a pile of books.

Jo Rioux's profile page


  • Short-listed, Comics for Kids Award, Joe Shuster Awards
  • Winner, Best Books for Kids & Teens, Canadian Children's Book Centre

Editorial Reviews

This graphic-novel adaptation of the sixth book in Labatt's "Sam, Dog Detective" series is quite successful.

School Library Journa

Sam's attitude and fumbling detective work are made even more enjoyable through the artist's panels, which ably mix the styles of manga and Western comics.

Kirkus Reviews

Librarian Reviews

Lake Monster Mix-Up (Sam & Friends Mystery)

Sam the dog is on vacation with her best friends, Jennie and Beth. When the girls find an old diary, Sam is on the trail of a new mystery. What’s glowing underwater? Why are there webbed footprints on the beach? Who knows the secret of Sagawa Lake? This second volume in the series is based on Labatt’s The Secret of Sagawa Lake.

Source: The Canadian Children’s Book Centre. Best Books for Kids & Teens. 2010.

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