Author: C. M. Surrisi
Genre: realistic fiction
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Summary(provided by publisher):A mystery has washed ashore at the coastal town of Maiden Rock. Quinnie Boyd's teacher, Ms. Stillford, hasn't shown up on the first day of school—or the day after that. Quinnie thinks it's a kidnapping case. Her mom, the town sheriff, doesn't believe her, but Quinnie's going to follow her instincts—even if she has to tiptoe around her mom to do it.
Quinnie's investigation will take her through a damp marsh, a lobster pound, and more of Maine's messiest places. On the way, she'll have help from her glamorous new neighbor, Mariella from New York, whether Quinnie wants it or not. As the girls hunt for clues around Maiden Rock, they'll encounter a swarm of cats, two nuns with a speeding habit, and a group of tattooed rocker-types who've been pigging out on lobster fries at the town café. And if Quinnie's hunch is right, the search may lead them right into danger .
My Opinion: The first thing to note is that the intended audience for this novel is middle grade. I'd go so far as to say young middle grade. Therefore, some simplicity in the plot and predictability are not unexpected. As a mystery, it follows investigative procedure fairly well. Quinnie looks at suspects, explores motives, and hunts for evidence. There is equal focus given to the mystery and exploring relationships, both with her mother and the new girl next door. This personalizes the story and gives the reader more to reflect upon. I could see this working well as a book club selection as there is plenty to discuss.
Advance Reader Copy provided by NetGalley