Tuesday, October 28, 2008

First Clues Review: The Case of the Missing Marquess by Nancy Springer

First Clues: Mysteries for Kids

is delighted to introduce a new feature for our website, book reviews written by students. These students offer their unique perspective on the book in their review and provide a valuable resource to parents looking for new mystery adventures for their kids to read.

The Case of the Missing Marquess by Nancy Springer

The Case of the Missing Marquess by Nancy Springer

Puffin (Paperback)
ISBN-10: 0-14-240933-2 (0142409332)
ISBN-13: 978-0-14-240933-6 (9780142409332)
Publication Date: November 2007
List Price: $6.99

Review written by Sammy, Age 11, Grade 6. Date of review: October 2008.

Review: The Case of the Missing Marquess is the first book of the series by Nancy Springer. Some of the characters in this book are familiar, Sherlock Holmes and his brother Mycroft Holmes. The author brings in their younger sister Enola, who is the main character, and Lord Tewksbury, who is a young runaway.

Have you ever wondered why you never see your brothers? Or on your birthday, your mom isn’t there that day? Or the next day or the next? Well that is exactly what Enola has to put up with. The character, Enola (which she painfully knows is "alone" spelled backwards), is 14 and lives in London. On her birthday her mother mysteriously disappears. Enola looks everywhere, but all she finds is her mother’s money in mysterious places using her mother’s gift. So Enola runs away from home, disguised as a widow, to search London for her mother. On the way she runs into two mean men who try to kill her and a boy her age that has also run away. The plot is mysterious, and the author was very creative about pulling characters in.

This book is very mysterious in a lot of ways. One way is that Enola has never seen her brothers which are famous detectives, Mycroft and Sherlock Holmes. The book is also surprising. One way the book is surprising is that Mycroft and Sherlock Holmes called their own mother foolish! Something also surprising is that when Enola’s mother ran away she just left a birthday gift and money for Enola, not even a “good-bye” note or anything. I also thought that the author had some very good descriptive details. The author also added the characters in the story very nicely, like Lord Tewksbury and the mean men. A weird thing about the book is that some words in the book are very hard to understand. I sometimes had to look in the dictionary. So I think this book would fit higher-level readers perfectly.

This author is creative and intelligent. She earned honors from the Mystery Writers of America. She also is a two time Edgar Award winning author. This book leaves a lot of questions hanging, but one important question is “why didn’t Enola’s mother bring Enola with her?” That question makes you want to read the second book! This book is a book any avid reader would want to read!

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