Failure On The Front Page

Check back for news and updates on Timmy Failure, his progress on becoming the world’s greatest private eye, client reviews, book signings, and more!

Timmy Line


“If Inspector Clouseau were in grade school, he’d be Timmy Failure. ... [H]is many fans will speed through the pages, and they’ll love Pastis’ illustrations, which feature an adorable polar bear shaped like a bowling pin. They may even adopt Timmy’s motto: ‘When you lose hope, find it.’ A loonily intellectual alternative to that wimpy kid.” Kirkus Reviews

“Great-aunt Colander is the gem of the series thus far. She truly ‘gets’ and seeks out Timmy, and she's the resourceful and clear-eyed antidote to the discombobulated detective. ... This heartwarming companion will make Timmy's fans even more eager for the third adventure.” Shelf Awareness

“Plenty of the puns, plays-on-words, and clever comedic timing will result in laugh-out-loud moments.” School Library Journal

“Pastis has a knack for comic timing, and the interplay between cartoon, text, and the absurdities of the story should continue to attract readers who wish they could shake their fists at the world with such inept panache.” Booklist


“This ironic, knowing, inspired book will prompt constant laughter.” The Sunday Times (London), Children’s Book of the Week

“A fabulously fun read and the line drawings are a treat. It’s original and quirky, with real heart.” — Philip Ardagh, The Guardian

“This book is an easy, extra-funny read ... [with] the funniest illustrations ever and, no matter what, you’re sure to find yourself laughing out loud on every page.” First News (U.K.)

“A crazy book from a boy’s perspective. ... Packed with inventive ideas and drawings as-done-by-Timmy ... it’s as funny as it sounds.” The Big Issue

“Full of deadpan humour, visual gags, and a twist of the surreal, Stephan Pastis is onto a winner with this new series.” Booktrust

“Detective Timmy may not have a clue, but he’s hilarious.” Cleveland Plain Dealer

“If you’ve read “Pearls Before Swine”, then you already know that Pastis is good at writing really funny comics. Well, this book shows he’s also good at writing really funny stories for kids — ones that grown-ups will enjoy, too.”

“With its high-low mix of humor and surprisingly sophisticated storytelling (parents will snicker at references like ‘Dial M for Magellan’), ‘Failure’ is anything but.” Austin American-Statesman

“The gap between who we are and who we think we are is the essence of the humor behind Timmy.” Houston Chronicle

“Timmy fails and fails again, yet emerges utterly convinced of his genius. The book is darn funny, and the illustrations are too.” New York Daily News

“The book was great and hilariously funny. Timmy Failure is a real page-turner!!! It was so great I just couldn’t put it down. My favourite character is Total the 1,500-pound polar bear. I recommend that everyone should read this book!” — Noah, age 9,

Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made is one of those ‘laugh your head off and try not to be sick’ books” — Charlie, age 9,

“This will be the best ever book you will read” — Adam, age 9,

“This is a hilarious, well-written story with totally captivating illustrations to keep your imagination racing. It’s a truly laugh-out-loud book which will enthrall its young readers as well as their parents during bedtime reading.” We Love This Book

“Pastis has assembled an eccentric and funny cast (running gags revolve around Total’s voracious appetite and a librarian who looks like one of the Hells Angels), yet there are also touching interactions to be found.” Publishers Weekly

“Timmy Failure is a winner!” — Jeff Kinney, author of Diary of a Wimpy Kid

“Readers should be simultaneously amused and touched by this quirky antihero.” — Booklist

The Pearls Before Swine cartoonist’s frequent black-and-white illustrations help to cast Timmy’s adventure in an appropriately ironic light. Timmy ... has greatness in him. Just like all of us.” Kirkus Reviews

“For years, I’ve admired Stephan Pastis’s brilliant, award-winning comic strip, Pearls Before Swine. I’m delighted to learn that he’s now bringing his hilariously offbeat sense of humor to the children’s book realm with Timmy Failure. Pastis crafts a great story starring an unforgettable protagonist whose unorthodox approach to detective work (and world domination) will have readers in stitches. A memorable supporting cast, clever drawings, and a riotous plot that Pastis steers expertly from whodunit to slapstick — this book has it all. For Timmy Failure, success is the only option!” — Lincoln Peirce, creator of the Big Nate series

“The deadpan humor is remarkable. ... You will actually laugh out loud with this book.” — Betsy Bird, A Fuse #8 Production

“Recommend it to anyone who is alive.” — Cameron, kid reviewer

“Pastis (creator of Pearls Before Swine) is a master of wry commentary in a comic form” — Andrea Vuleta, Mrs. Nelson’s, La Verne, CA

“I would recommend it because it is funny and has a good description of polar bears.” — Jamie, kid reviewer

“Crazy funny book for ages 8-12, boys or girls. Cleverly written, awesome illustrations, and laugh-out-loud witty. I'll definitely recommend this to middle grade readers.”— Rachel Watkins, Avid Bookshop, Athens, GA

Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made is “invaluable to anyone who ever wanted to be a detective.” — Anonymous