Review Detail

3.0 1
Middle Grade Fiction 331
Nice, But Forgettable
Overall rating
 
3.0
Plot
 
2.0
Characters
 
3.0
Writing Style
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
3.0
I feel this book might fall into the category of "titles I enjoyed for the brief time I read them, but will honestly forget I ever did unless I look through my Goodreads history." It's not a bad book by any means, but there is nothing present to make this book stand out from any other children's historical mystery. Girl who dresses as a boy? Check. Characters that largely fall into a dichotomy of good or bad with almost no shades of gray? Check. A mystery, the solution of which is fairly obvious and will be "revealed" in the last twenty pages after the protagonist has remained more or less clueless? Check.

To the author's credit, she makes no effort to disguise the fact that she cared nothing for historical accuracy when writing the book, and mostly focused on writing what she thought would be enjoyable. And for a younger audience, that may be the case. Although the book is marketed as middle grade fiction, the writing is a bit more juvenile in nature and the plot is a bit more simplistic as well.

As an aside, one thing I did appreciate that raised this book from a 2.5 to a full 3 star read for me was the inclusion of a one-act play that not only fit the theme of acting that the author went for in this book, but also was explicitly stated by the author to be approved for a class activity. There was no need for them to go to the effort of writing an extra play that the protagonist is supposed to be creating, but they did. I just found that endearing and kind of the author.

Thanks to YABC for sending me a free copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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