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Audio Book Review: The Case of the Cursed Dodo by Jake G. Panda, Narrated by Full Cast

The Case of the Cursed Dodo by Jake G. Panda

The Case of the Cursed Dodo by Jake G. Panda

Narrated by a Full Cast



If you’re looking for trouble, you’ve found it. The name’s Jake G. Panda, and trouble seems to follow me wherever I go. I work in the protection racket at a flophouse for endangered critters called the Last Resort. I’m the hotel snoop. The resident fuzz. It’s my job to keep these guests safe and outta harm’s way. This is the first of my many misadventures. A wild and woolly mystery involving a lost suitcase, a green bird, and a bunch of double-crossing animals. I’m calling this jungle noir The Case of the Cursed Dodo.

This hilarious first instalment of The Endangered Files follows Jake, a hardboiled panda detective, and an unusual cast of endangered creatures on a globe-trotting adventure that will appeal to young and old alike.

The Case of the Cursed Dodo by Jake G. Panda, Narrated by Full CastTitle: The Case of the Cursed Dodo
Author: Jake G. Panda
Narrator: Cast – Michael McConnohie, J.W. Terry, Dave Mallow, Molly Brandenburg, Antoinette Attell, Ian Whitcomb, Barbara Watkins, Bobb Lynes.
Paperback: 172 pages/2 hours 34 minutes
Publisher: Woolly Family Studios, October 3rd 2017 (first published November 23rd 2014)
Genre: Mystery, Middle Grade, Family Audio Drama
Read: audio book

Stars: ★★★★★
Buy On: Amazon US | Audible | Amazon India


My Review:

Note: I received this book from the author via AudioBookworm Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Cover: Cliched Mysterious

Narration: Entralling

Readability, language: Simple and Easy

Why did I choose this book: I was looking for an easy listen. And this was a simple easy listen, just not how I had expected it.

I’ve been listening to audio books for two years now and yet this is the first time I’ve experienced a book like The Case of the Cursed Dodo. This book is a full production with multiple voice actors, sound effects and background score. It was like listening to a movie, and in my mind I could see it all in vivid technicolour.

A mystery thriller, The Case of the Cursed Dodo starts off with Jake G Panda, the in-house detective at ‘Wildlife’s Last Resort’ receiving a call that gets cut-off mid-conversation. He sets out to find his friend, the Professor, who has disappeared. Along the way he gets kidnapped by poachers, rescued by the Endangered Underground and finds a mysterious Jade bird. Now he must solve the mystery of the bird before it’s too late.

First Impressions

It was the title and cover that caught my eye first when I came across The Case of the Cursed Dodo. It was just so like those Famous Five, Three Investigators, Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys books I’ve read ages ago. The cliche was comforting. The blurb closed the deal as I wanted a simple easy listen. And it was a simple easy listen, just not how I had expected it.

The Case of the Cursed Dodo as an audio book is an experience that will enthral. The production makes it a different thing altogether, it’s no longer a simple children’s mystery with a whole lot of varied endangered animals.

Plot, Setting, Characters

The story begins at the Wildlife’s Last Resort, a flophouse for animals in trouble and quickly becomes a globe-trotting adventure, involving flying to Marrakech by Tortoise Air, searching The Critter Bazaar, escaping by The Creature Comfort Express and landing up in Extinction City.

This may be a children’s book but the play of words will be absolutely enjoyable for adults. I laughed many a time at the puns and old clichés. Have you spotted some of them? It was way too funny.

There is a whole forest of anthropomorphized animals as characters in the story. Here are a few – Jake G. Panda a panda, The Professor a.k.a. Harry a hispid hare, Rose an El Hierro giant lizard, Ernie an Asian elephant, Daisy Condor a California condor, Madame Baloni a wild yak, and Bedouin Joe a large Bimini boa among others.
I enjoyed getting to know the whole bunch of animals, each with their own quirks of dress, makeup and mannerisms. They add so much to the story.

Note for Kids

If you have kids this a great book to introduce them to a plethora of animals. There is also a Resources Section with links to fun activities and animal organisations.

Audio Book Experience

Like I was saying earlier The Case of the Cursed Dodo as an audio book is an experience to be had. Each character has his or her own voice actor, the narration is excellent with each chapter starting out with a recap and scene setting, and the story progressing with sound effects and a background score. The language is simple and easy. The story has a good pace and an unexpected climax, there’s loads of action too!

I absolutely enjoyed The Case of the Cursed Dodo and heartily vouch for it. This is a book for kids for sure (I lent it to a 10 year old and she sat still for almost the whole book!). But it’s also for adults who enjoy verbal humour and word-play. 🙂

Buy On: Amazon US | Audible | Amazon India

About the Author:

Marc Secchia - AranyaJake G. Panda is a wildlife investigator. A hardboiled Winnie-the-Pooh. He likes bamboo and saving endangered animals. He is the author of The Endangered Files, a mystery series about his misadventures in the protection business.

His partner in crime, the fella who helps write these books because, let’s be honest, it’s not easy typing with big, clunky bear paws, resides somewhere in New England. He has written his fair share of stuff, mostly for the big screen. And some of it has actually been projected. He likes to keep a low profile and lets Jake do all the talking.
Author Links:
WebsiteGoodReads │ Twitter – @jakeGPandaPIFacebook Page

December 16, 2017   1 Comment

Book Review: Death by Facebook by Everett Peacock

Title: Death by Facebook
Author: Everett Peacock
Paperback: 312 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace (March 4th 2011)
Genre: Mystery
Read: eBook
Stars: ****/5
Summary: (GoodReads)
A vacationing soldier in Hawaii…
Earth’s most active volcano, anxious to repeat itself…
Two murders involving love, madness, friendship, hippies, tsunamis, and the great hereafter…

DEATH BY FACEBOOK by Everett Peacock
Be careful what you say online


The story plays out in Hawaii where James and Janet have gone for a vacation before he gets deployed to Afghanistan. Janet murders James and the book is about why she did that and the consequences of the murder on the island like a butterfly effect but much closer.

Death by Facebook has a lot of characters but each adds to the story. I found myself relating and feeling for each one of the many characters on the island.

Other than the murder Everett Peacock describes a volcano eruption and its impact on the people on the island. The mix of the kind of people he chooses to tell the story are varied – from a hippie to the police and scientists. The views and reactions of people in crisis fascinated me.

When I picked up this book I thought it would be all about Facebook and a murder but I was pleasantly surprised to find that Facebook played only a small part in the large story. There was so much more happening. The book is written well and grabs the reader. The pace of the story is good with a lot of action.

The book got me thinking about Facebook and just how powerful it could be both to do good and evil. Just how far reaching its messages are and its impact on people.

It also questioned good and evil. Janet starts her journey through the book as an evil person who murders her fiancé but as I went along with the story getting to know her better, I started to question if it was she who was evil or her situation.

I’d recommend this book to all who are looking for something different to read that is still enjoyable.

January 31, 2012   1 Comment

The Mystery of the Suddenly Appearing Holes

While drinking tea this morning I remembered an old incident that got me smiling.

Some years ago when we were kids we bought our first emergency light. Big deal you say; it was a big deal. In those days every one of our friends had one at home but we still studied by candlelight. So, getting this box with switches and lights attached as antennae had us jubilant and always finding excuses to use it.

A few months later a strange phenomenon started to happen in our house. Clothes suddenly started to get holes in them. The holes like the hole you get when you drop a lit match head on cloth. But, only Dad smoked so how did granny and I have holes in our clothes. One day we found a towel with a huge hole, as if it had just melted away. Then just as suddenly as it started it stopped. We were bewildered but there just was no answer.

This repeated over time; the holes would start to appear suddenly and then just stop too. Feel free to imagine all the reasons we gave and got. From cigarettes and matches to birds and ghosts. But after a lot of examining of the towel (our biggest evidence with a half foot hole) we came to the conclusion that it was acid. Only acid could melt the cloth so.

Now the search began with renewed vigour. We kids found new theories every day. One theory was the washing machine was causing it in some manner, maybe there was an acid leak somewhere. Another was the birds – maybe the birds pooped on the cloth and the acid in that melted the cloth. All of these fell apart since for the towel hole we would have either needed an entire bird community or a giant condor.

Am sure you’ve figured out the culprit by now. Yes, the famed emergency light had a faulty battery. So when we took it down to use the holes suddenly started and when thanks to KEB (Karnataka Electricity Board) we didn’t need to, they stopped. Of course it took us a few clothes, a towel, a carpet and lots of time to figure this out, but it flamed such creativity.

So, why am I telling you this… No reason, just…


February 22, 2010   4 Comments