by Joan Carris
Candlewick Press, $15.99, 103 pages

At the Bed and Biscuit boardinghouse, Grampa cares for animals who need some rest and relaxation.  Grampa’s own pets, Ernest the mini-pig, Gabby the mynah bird, Milly the cat, and Sir Walter the Scottish terrier, are ideal hosts for newcomers…except for Malicia, a tiny ornery chicken who shows up, ready to wreak havoc with her magical talents.

In her Bed and Biscuit series, Joan Carris creates an exciting world of talking animals presented in a beginning chapter book format.  In the third book of the series, Magic at the Bed and Biscuit, the animals work together to stop Malicia, a city chicken with a bad attitude, from causing trouble with her magic.  Any one of them could be her next target.  They all witnessed how Malicia stopped Rory the Rooster from crowing at dawn (she stole some of his tail feathers!).

Readers will enjoy Noah Z. Jones’ illustrations.  Each one adds to the humor of the story and together, the text and illustrations present a fantastic animal adventure.  Will Grampa see the truth about Malicia before something goes horribly wrong?  Leave it to Ernest, one smart mini-pig, to help his pals stop Malicia’s magic for good.

Reviewed by Kathryn Franklin