Groundwood Books

The Spotted Dog Last Seen

Written by Jessica Scott Kerrin

For readers 8 - 11 years old | Published July 29, 2013 | ISBN 9781554983889
JUVENILE FICTION / Mysteries & Detective Stories

Cover of The Spotted Dog Last Seen

Regular price $8.95 CAD

208 pages
Digital Format

Also Available in Print

About this book

The Spotted Dog Last Seen

Jessica Scott Kerrin

While tracking clues from a secret code penciled in the margins of mystery novels at a public library, Derek Knowles-Collier discovers a time capsule that may finally put his haunting past to rest.

At QueensviewElementary, grade-six students are required to complete a community service unit as part of their school curriculum. Derek Knowles-Collier was sick when groups were assigned, so he is stuck with what’s leftover: landscape and repair duty at the local cemetery.

Derek is not happy about his assignment. When he was very young, his friend Dennis was killed by a car after running into the road to catch a ball. Ever since, Derek has had recurring nightmares, and he is afraid that spending time in a cemetery will make it even harder for him to sleep through the night.

It’s a relief, therefore, when his group’s lessons on all aspects of cemetery care are so interesting and strange that Derek just doesn’t have time to dwell on his experience with death. And when it rains, the lessons take place in the nearby public library, which takes him out of the cemetery altogether, at least for an afternoon.

One day, a book arrives at the library, an anonymous donation that happens every year. On reading the book, Derek and his group mates find a secret code written on an inside margin. One code leads to the next, with the last code leading the students to a time capsule.

Through a series of discoveries and deductions, Derek and his friends discover who has been sending books to the library every year. They also discover the truth behind Dennis’s long-ago death, which means that Derek is finally able to put his terrifying memories (and his nightmares) to rest.


About the Author

Jessica Scott Kerrin

Jessica Scott Kerrin is the author of the newly launched Lobster Chronicles series and the best-selling Martin Bridge series. She lives in downtown Halifax, Canada, and once owned a nutty Springer Spaniel who inspired this book.

Awards and Praise
Derek tells his own story, allowing readers to empathize with his fears and struggles as he comes to grips with them....Surprising twists and turns amid laughter and tears.
  • Short-listed Manitoba Young Readers’ Choice Award, 2015
  • Short-listed CLA Book of the Year for Children Award, 2014
  • Commended A New York Public Library Book for Reading and Sharing, 2013
  • Short-listed John Spray Mystery Award, 2014
  • Short-listed Cocheco Readers' Award, 2015
  • Short-listed Rocky Mountain Book Award, 2014