With so much reading going on this summer, I’ve got too many books to post a review of just one book a week. So I’m doing a quicker review of selected books from my 50-book list of the week. This week’s three book picks all seem to correlate on the genre of mystery, all cleverly told in their own way.
First up is Effie Starr Zook Has One More Question. When Effie moves to Penn Creek to spend the summer with her aunt and uncle, she discovers family secrets and strange incidents. For example: Who are the Yonders? What does Mr. Odbody, the bookstore owner, know? And why does everyone seem to be hiding a secret that they’re not telling her? This book is sweet, funny, and well-told. Effie is a very relatable heroine and Penn Creek – secrets and all – sounds like a very quaint place to live.
Next is Spy on History: Mary Boswer and the Civil War Spy Ring. This book is superb in that it features audience participation. The readers – with the help of a spy decoder, acetate, maps, a page from Uncle Tom’s Cabin, and queerly cut vellum – are invited to solve the mystery of Mary’s past. With the help of the clues on the page, the story, and their handy-dandy tools (included in the book), they can decipher what the answer is to the Vigenere cipher and where Mary’s hidden diary is. This book also includes the story of Mary Bowser, as she risks her life to discover the plans of Confederate president Davis. It’s a thrilling ride through history, earlier spydom, and mystery that will keep readers engaged and interested in reading more on all subjects.
This last book is my personal favorite, because it is a gift from my generous Tia Nene. May I present: The Lost Files of Nancy Drew! This book is similar to the ‘Ology books (Pirateology, Wizardology, Spyology, etc.) in that it is more of a scrapbook, with things to read, pull out, flip open, and explore. But I love it for that! This book is so great because it talks about the classic books, the evolution of Nancy, her tips and tricks, and features vintage art that is irresistible. Seriously, the inside of these pages is just a treasure trove of colorful illustrations and fun wonders to find. I own half if not more of the Nancy Drew series already, so I really am enjoying owning this “companion” book. It definitely makes me think about the books more when reading them. Once more a shoutout should go to my amazing aunt for giving me this book. She is too amazing and I can’t thank her enough for this book.
Well, that’s all for this week, folks! Along with these three books, I will be submitting about thirty or forty other books for collection on my Summer Reading list at the library. Yikes! Hope I can keep up the pace all summer long.
What’s on your summer reading list?