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Children's Fiction Mysteries & Detective Stories

The Big Sting

by (author) Rachelle Delaney

Tundra Book Group
Initial publish date
Feb 2023
Mysteries & Detective Stories, Multigenerational, Insects, Spiders, etc.
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Feb 2023
    List Price

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Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 8 to 12
  • Grade: 3 to 7


A visit to Leo's grandfather's farm turns upside down when his grandmother's beehives are stolen. A light-hearted and funny middle-grade novel for fans of Rebecca Stead and Lynda Mullaly Hunt.

Eleven-year-old Leo is an "armchair adventurer." This, according to Dad, means he'd choose adventures in books or video games over real-life experiences. And while Leo hates the label, he can’t argue with it. Unlike his little sister Lizzie, Leo is not a risk-taker.

So when he, Lizzie, Mom and Dad leave the city to visit Grandpa on Heron Island, Leo finds all kinds of dangers to avoid — from the deep, dark ocean to an old barn on the verge of collapse. But nothing on the island is more fearsome than Grandpa himself — Leo has never met anyone so grumpy! According to Mom, Grandpa is still grieving the recent death of his wife, a beekeeper beloved by everyone on the island.

Despite Leo's best efforts to avoid it, adventure finds him anyway when Grandma’s beehives go missing in the dead of night. Infuriated, Grandpa vows to track down the sticky-fingered thieves himself . . . with risk-averse Leo and danger-loving Lizzie (plus a kitten named Mayhem) in tow.

About the author

RACHELLE DELANEY lives in Vancouver, BC, where she works as a freelance writer, editor and creative writing teacher. The Lost Souls Of Island X is the follow-up to her first novel, The Ship Of Lost Souls, which won the Canadian Authors Association/BookLand Press Emerging Writer Award and was shortlisted for the Sheila A. Egoff Children’s Literature Prize, the Chocolate Lily Book Award and the Red Cedar Book Award. Visit her online at

Rachelle Delaney's profile page


  • Short-listed, Sunshine Coast Writers and Editors Society Book Award

Editorial Reviews

"A story full of mystery, adventure, and personal challenges that will have readers buzzing." —Kirkus Reviews
"This character-forward beekeeping mystery considers the limitations of labels and the authentic messiness of IRL adventures." —Publishers Weekly
"[A]n action-packed, riotous quest to solve the mystery of the missing hives. . . . Delaney’s memorable cast of characters will strike a chord with tweens." —CM Reviews
"A cute funny story about self-confidence, family and stretching your boundaries." —Calgary Herald
“Rachelle Delaney has written a book that manages to be informative . . . while also being rollicking good fun.” —BC Book World

Other titles by Rachelle Delaney