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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
Finnigan and the Lost Circus Wagon: Finnigan the Circus Cat, Book Two is a novel about animals for children and preteens written and illustrated by Mary T. Wagner. While this is the second book in the series, Wagner gives enough background information in the story to allow it to be read on its own. Finnigan was a tiny kitten when young Lucy Farnsworth smuggled him into the family’s barn. Her father was allergic to cats, but she figured maybe, just maybe, he’d never know that Finnigan was in there at all. Lucy and her family were the newest Farnsworths to inhabit the family house and operate the Farnsworth Circus Museum. It had been started by Old Man Farnsworth who had been a circus clown before he retired. His efforts in restoring the circus wagons and props he kept in his barn had been overseen by generations of circus mice, the most recent being Maximilian and his cousin, Leroy. The two mice also took it on themselves to raise little Finnigan, and life in the Museum was simple and uncomplicated until a tractor came by with an old and rather decrepit wagon that smelt strongly of chickens. There was something special about this wagon, but the three best friends couldn’t figure it out.
Mary T. Wagner’s Finnigan and the Lost Circus Wagon is a fanciful and entertaining story which might just have you thinking about mice, particularly circus mice, in an entirely different way. Wagner’s characters are marvelous! I loved the bantering that Max and his somewhat portly cousin, Leroy, engage in, and watching as Finnigan recreates acrobatic feats using his prehensile tail is great fun indeed. The mystery of the lost circus wagon is clever and enthralling, and even gives the reader a bit of circus history along with the puzzle. What will Max, Leroy and Finnigan get involved with next? I was pleased to discover that there’s soon to be a third book in the series, entitled Finnigan The Lionhearted, and am looking forward to reading it. Finnigan and the Lost Circus Wagon: Finnigan the Circus Cat, Book Two is most highly recommended.