18 February 2016

Review: Mystery at the Hot Pond by David DeVowe

Book Description


Very little had changed at Stoney Creek for eleven-year-old Arthur (Shoe) Makinen until MaryAnne DuPree upset his school year in 1924. Shoe discovers evidence that a double drowning at the sawmill may have been murder. MaryAnne’s faith is a mystery to Shoe as he suspects MaryAnne is intertwined in the investigation. What is she doing here? Was it an accident or murder? Will life ever be the same?

My Review

Mystery at the Hot Pond is an enjoyable middle grade adventure story, set in the 1920’s in the small mill town of Stoney Creek. The story is narrated by Shoe, an engaging child who doesn’t like change but does enjoy a good puzzle.

These two things combine in Mystery at the Hot Pond, when Shoe’s pleasant life is disrupted by MaryAnne, the new girl in school, and a mystery at the mill where his father works, and which involves MaryAnne’s father. Neither Shoe nor MaryAnne expect to get mixed up in this, but their uncanny knack of being in the wrong place at the right time (or is that the right place at the wrong time?) means they become key to solving the mystery.

I found the beginning a little slow, as it was more around Shoe’s conflict with MaryAnne than the promised mystery, but once the story got going it was a good read, sure to appeal to young readers (the writing was definitely more suited to younger readers than a more sophisticated teen audience). I especially liked the way the author wove the Christian themes into the plot.

Thanks to the author for providing a free ebook for review.

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