May 1, 2015 Booklist 17 www.booklistonline.com May 1, 2015 Booklist 17 #mysterymonth
himself at the center of a mystery. An
enchanting and empowering read.
Hold Fast. By Blue Balliett. 2013.
Scholastic, $17.99 (9780545299886).
Eleven-year-old Early’s family may
be poor, but her father, Dash, is trying
to improve their circumstances. When
he disappears, the family’s life is turned
upside down, and they’re forced to move
into a shelter. The mystery centers on a
missing book, but this is as much about
heart as it is about plot.
The London Eye Mystery. By Siobhan
Dowd. 2008. Random/Yearling, paper,
$7.99 (9780385751841). Gr. 5–8.
When Ted’s cousin disappears from the
London Eye, an observation wheel from
which one can see all over the city, the teen
with Asperger’s must use his “funny brain”
and his unconventional skills to find the
boy. A taut page-turner with genuine heft.
Madhattan Mystery. By John J. Bonk.
2012. Walker, $16.99 (9780802723499).
Lexi and her brother arrive in NYC to
stay with their aunt and attend City Camp.
Instead, they get involved in a jewel heist
and spend their trip dashing through train
stations and around Central Park to find
out not just the who but also the why. A
madcap but well-rounded caper.
Masterminds. By Gordon Korman.
2015. HarperCollins/Balzer+Bray, $16.99
(9780062299963). Gr. 5–8.
Eli, 13, is content in the tiny, idyllic
town of Serenity, New Mexico, until his
misbehaving friend, Randy, is sent away.
Something screwy is going on, and Eli
is intent on getting to the bottom of it.
Korman constructs a cleverly plotted,
thought-provoking mystery with a gratifying payoff.
The Mystery of Meerkat Hill: A Precious
Ramotswe Mystery for Young Readers.
By Alexander McCall Smith. Illus. by
Iain McIntosh. 2013. Anchor, $12.99
(9780345804587). Gr. 3–6.
The future proprietor of the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency meets two poor
schoolkids, a brother and sister, who do
possess one treasure: a meerkat. When
their family’s cow goes missing, Precious
must find it. This third book in the series
is a standout as McCall Smith proves
himself equally adept at writing for older
and younger audiences.
Picture Me Gone. By Meg Rosoff. 2013.
Putnam, $17.99 (9780399257650).
When 12-year-old Mila’s father’s
friend goes missing, father and daughter
head to upstate New York to find him.
Rosoff shapes this story as much by
the insightful Mila’s observations and
intuitions as actual events. Though it’s
presented as a mystery, this is so much
more than that.
The Red Blazer Girls: The Ring
of Rocamadour. By Michael D.
Beil. 2009. Knopf, e-book, $25.16
(9780375843037). Gr. 5–8.
Sophie and her pals go to an exclusive
school on the Upper East Side, where
one afternoon Sophie spies a ghostly
face in a window. The mystery becomes
a scavenger hunt wrapped in clues
about religion, literature, and math.
Complex—especially the math—yet
Rex Zero, King of Nothing. By Tim
Wynne-Jones. 2008. Square Fish,
paper, $6.99 (9780312674786).
Sixth-grader Rex Norton-Norton (aka
Rex Zero) has a whole set of mysteries to
solve here, including the secretive behavior of Mr. Norton-Norton. Set in 1960s
Canada, this tale for preteens includes
laugh-aloud humor and some very serious
The Sixty-Eight Rooms. By Marianne
Malone. Illus. by Gina Triplett. 2010.
Random, $16.99 (9780375857102).
The Thorne Rooms at Chicago’s Art
Institute are the setting for this fantastic
mystery. Ruthie and her best friend,
Jack, are enthralled by the rooms filled
with incredible miniatures. When they
find they are able to shrink to go inside
them, that’s when the mysteries and adventures begin.
Under the Egg. By Laura Marx
Fitzgerald. 2014, Dial, $16.99
(9780803740013). Gr. 4–7.
In the tradition of Blue Balliett’s art
mysteries, this introduces Theo, 13, who
has her hands full keeping her troubled
mother and their Greenwich Village
household afloat after her grandfather’s
death. A mysterious painting, perhaps
valuable, is discovered in the house, but
what is it doing there? And what did her
grandfather have to do with it?