Written by and Illustrated by
Alan Nolan
The Big Break Detectives Casebook

The Big Break Detectives: three school friends who, from their secret base under the school, solve crimes, right wrongs, unravel mysteries and nab evil-doers - all on their lunch break!

An exciting graphic novel for children of all ages.

Add to Basket
64 pages
210x187 mm

The Big Break Detectives are three friends, Danny Sullivan, Cait Conway, and her somewhat eccentric twin brother Little Tom, who attend Saint Agatha's National School in a leafy city suburb.

They run a detective agency during their school big break -- they advertise in the local newsagent window and operate from their secret headquarters in a forgotten sub-basement, full of obsolete computers, dusty and forlorn science projects and defunct office equipment, underneath the school.

As their lunch break is only 30 minutes long, they only have this half hour to escape from the school, solve the mystery, and return unnoticed before the bell rings again signaling the end of school break and the end of their adventure.

The Casebook, "written" in typically offbeat style by Little Tom, who has filled the pages with kooky asides and his own cartoons, features four stories full of humour and surprising twists.

Alan Nolan lives and works in Bray, County Wicklow, Ireland. He has written and illustrated many books and comics for children and grown-ups, including Fintan’s Fifteen, Conor's Caveman and the Murder Can Be Fatal series.

humour and artwork remind you a bit of the Dandy and Beano

it’s the added details that really boost the charm factor

[a] fun and re-readable endeavour for younger comic readers

'expertly combines suspense, mystery and comedy'


'the perfect introduction to books for those struggling to find the pleasure in reading'


'kids will be giggling away at the jokes and funny scenarios which Nolan excels at creating'


'I could read this all day ... Kids will love this ... It’s funny, it has tons of adventure ... Expertly paced, snappy ... Recommended'

Comic Cast

'hugely impressed at how Nolan and by extension O’Brien Press were pulling out all the stops to ensure that the joy that comics can bring is enshrined in the young minds who has gathered here on a pluvial October afternoon ... I left the store feeling lik

Irish Comic News

'With the help of an underappreciated robot and a secret sub-sub basement, Tom, Kate, and Danny are a whirlwind of intrepid investigative power. A neat introduction to new comic readers, The Big Break Detectives Casebook will have heads spinning with pith

Book Fest

'full of zany illustrations and snippets to grab readers’ attentions ... it certainly had my seven-year-old laughing, as did Death by Chocolate'

Sunday Independent

'a lively read, with plenty of off-beat humour that would be sure to appeal to even the most reluctant National School readers'

Books Ireland

'this is the perfect book for all young budding detectives ... and for every kid that dreams of escaping to another world instead of sitting in class!'

The Irish World

'Alan Nolan is on the trail of another junior graphic novel hit with The Big Break Detectives Casebook ... The 30-minute time constraint before the detectives have to be back at their school desk adds a sense of whirlwind urgency to these madcap adventure

The Evening Echo

'The four cases in this book are short, punchy and clever, just like a good joke. Although modern in approach and format, the idea of children detectives is a venerable one into which the Big Break Detectives fit comfortably'

Books Ireland

'Fun comic-style investigations with plenty of added information and snippets to enjoy. A novel and enjoyable book which will appeal to a cross-section of ages.'

Parents in Touch

'attractively animated series of mini-adventures that has something for everybody ... His broad range of characters and jocular repartee make it a winner all round ... There are echoes of everything from Charles Dickens to Hercule Poirot and Inspector Gad

The Irish Catholic

'charmingly presented ... littered with puns and jokes, and a generous sprinkling of funny names, kids will get a big kick out of these'

Your comment or review

Rights Held
World, all languages

Other books by this author
  • Fintan's Fifteen
  • Six Million Ways to Die
  • Destination: Homicide!
  • And The Blood Flowed Green

You may also like
  • Mad Grandad and the Kleptoes
  • Robots Don't Cry!
  • Mad Grandad and the Wicked Pictures
  • Mad Grandad and the Mutant River