Thursday, July 11, 2013

Moxie and the Art of Rule Breaking

Summer Throwdown 2013If you haven't signed up for the Summer Throw Down, hurry over to The Brain Lair and do so immediately!

I admit that I took an evil sort of glee in battling the teachers last year, although really, I don't normally feel that the teachers and I are competing AGAINST each other! This year, the goal is to read more than one did last summer-- I managed to get through 54 books last year, and am barely logging a book a day this summer, so I don't think that will happen.

Follow the tweets at #summerthrowdown-- this is the entire reason why I signed up for a Twitter account!

Moxie and the Art of Rule Breaking: A 14 Day MysteryDionne, Erin. Moxie and the Art of Rule Breaking 
11 July 2013, Dial
E ARC from
Moxie lives in Jamaica Plain near Boston with her mother and grandmother. Her grandfather, Grumps, is in a rest home because he has Alzheimers. When Moxie is approached by a red haired woman who gives her a message for her grandfather that  Sully Cupcakes wants his stuff back. Grumps doesn’t have enough lucid days to give Moxie any clues; he just tells her that Sully is dangerous. Moxie and her friend Ollie have a great summer after 8th grade planned- they have been given train passes and permission to travel into Boston as long as they are together, and plan to go on lots of sightseeing trips. Moxie continues to be harassed by the red haired woman, however, so tries to figure out what “stuff” she is talking about. She eventually realizes that it is artwork that was stolen in March of 1990o from the Isabell Stewart Gardner museum, and finds out that her grandfather, a carpenter, did work for organized crime bosses and may have hidden the paintings in buildings that he helped to renovate. When Moxie and Ollie uncover some of the paintings in the state house attic, they know they are on to something. It’s dangerous, though, and when Ollie’s phone is answered by the red headed woman, Moxie fears he’s been kidnapped. This doesn’t stop her from uncovering other treasures, even when she has to call 911 to come and get some of them so that she can escape from the Old North Church with being attacked! Their quest takes them into the Green Monster and Fenway Stadium, as well as all over the city.
Strengths: This is a book where the setting becomes a character in the book. I’ve only been to Boston once recently, but the details of the city are excellent and add a lot to the story. The theft is based on one that really occurred, but as it has not yet been solved, this story is all conjecture about what might have happened. Moxie is fun, and her need to explore on her own is tempered nicely by the concern shown by her mother and grandmother when she does. I do like this author’s other books and would be very happy if Moxie were to show up in another mystery book. Fans of Beil’s Red Blazer Girls will be glad to take their sleuthing skills to Boston.
Weaknesses: Moxie behaves in ways that would be very dangerous in real life, and this gave me a little pause. The red headed woman was super creepy and dangerous. 

I picked up a copy of Karen Karbo's Minerva Clark Goes to the Dogs and was sad to see the first book in the series was out of print. While this looks like something my girls who like mystery series would like, I’m trying to break myself of buying out of print books!Good to dust off for girls who like this book and are waiting for the sequel, if you have copies.

This is W.A.R. Roecker, Lisa and Laura. This is W.A.R.
2 July 2013, SoHo Teen, ARC from Baker and Taylor

For a more YA mystery, ones that fans of Pretty Little Liars would like, take a look at this one. I may pass for middle school because the sexual innuendo.

"This is W.A.R. begins with a victim who can no longer speak for herself, and whose murder blossoms into a call-to-arms. Enter four very different girls, four very different motives to avenge Willa Ames-Rowan, and only one rule to start: Destroy James Gregory and his family at any cost. Willa's initials spell the secret rallying cry that spurs the foursome to pool their considerable resources and deliver their particular brand of vigilante justice. Innocence is lost, battles are won—and the pursuit of the truth ultimately threatens to destroy them all."

1 comment:

  1. I love it! I live sort of near West Roxbury and we play them for soccer. What fun to find a book set near us!