Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 9 to 12
- Grade: 4 to 7
- Reading age: 9 to 12
The summer is off to a lousy start when Levi's bike is stolen from outside the corner store. He feels even worse because he didn't lock it. But when his best friend Riley's locked bike is stolen the very next day, the boys are determined to get both of them back. When they discover there has been a string of bicycle thefts in the area, the friends hatch several plans to find the culprit. There are so many potential suspects—Steve Morrow and his gang, the tattooed guy who sits at the bus stop, the owners of the secondhand-bike store. There's also Emily Grimshaw, Levi's childhood nemesis, who keeps popping up and showing a peculiar interest in the thefts. Does she really want to help or is she involved somehow? And will Levi and Riley ever see their beloved bikes again?
About the author
Hazel Hutckins est l'auteure de plus de 30 livres pour enfants, y compris l'album illustré primé Mattland, une œuvre qui est aussi illustrée par Duan Petricic. Hazel vit à Canmore, en Alberta.
After many years of juggling writing, raising her children, and making a home with her now deceased husband, Hazel spends her days writing full time. Winner of Writer's Guild of Alberta Award for Children's Literature, she has written children's short fiction for Chirp, Chickadee, and Cricket.
When answering where the inspiration for A Second is a Hiccup came from, Hazel comments, "I decided to see if I could find other ways to describe time. When the writing began to flow in poetic form - and when I came up with the engaging title line A Second is a Hiccup - I knew I had begun a labor of love. The book went through many incarnations....in one version I actually brought in centuries and eons! Good grief! But it finally returned to exactly what it should be...immediate, simple and close-to-home. It is my sincere hope that children of all types will enjoy finding and celebrating, among the pages, the many ways they spend their time."
- Short-listed, SYRCA Diamond Willow Award nominee
- Short-listed, Rocky Mountain Book Award nominee
- Short-listed, Hackmatack Children's Choice Award nominee
- Short-listed, Silver Falchion Award finalist
- Short-listed, R. Ross Annett Award nominee
- Short-listed, Silver Birch Express Award nominee
- Commended, CCBC Best Books
"Hutchins has written a gripping mystery for children with twists and clues enough to keep readers engaged until the surprise resolution. She is a master at chapter-ending cliff-hangers. There could not be a more relatable subject matter for a pre-teen mystery than a bike thief, and Hutchins delivers a cast of characters complete with believable dialogue, actions, and reactions...Hutchins’ gives children the benefit of the doubt by not shying away from the issues of animal abuse and different/difficult family life, while also not being overwhelmingly didactic. Humour is also sprinkled throughout the text, creating a beautiful harmony...A novel that will pull young readers in with no difficulty at all while setting up some very interesting discussions for post-reading. Highly Recommended."
"Filled with red herrings and detective work, this page-turner mystery provides readers with a cliffhanger at the end of each chapter. The author uses the theme of stolen bikes to pose questions about morality, inviting students to form their own thoughts on what is right and wrong. That makes this a good read for a book club or a read-aloud for discussion in the classroom."
Library Media Connection
"A fun and entertaining story that is conversational in style, and moves at a fast pace...An enjoyable and quick read that has numerous discussion points."
"The plot twists and turns will have readers guessing until the end."
School Librarian's Workshop