Nothing deep. No burning political questions. No kids who are out to save the planet. No serious relationship issues. No murder and mayhem. A Recipe 4 Robbery is just a plain vanilla kids’ mystery about a jewel robbery. This mystery is just right for middle school readers who still don’t want to deal with the violence and seriousness of YA and adult mysteries, qualities which are working their way down into children’s mysteries, too. One of my daughters, even when she was junior high age, wouldn’t read mysteries at all because she said they frightened her. A Recipe 4 Robbery would have been something she could enjoy without being scared.
It all takes place at The Bloomsbury Cucumber Festival where Lindy is doing her best to avoid all vegetables, especially any concoction cooked up by Mrs. Unger, aka Granny Goose. Unfortunately, Lindy’s mom helps her plate to a heaping helping of Granny’s cucumber casserole. Fortunately, Lindy finds a ruby necklace hiding under the cukes and goop. Unfortunately, Lindy and her friends know that if they turn in the necklace to the police, Granny Goose’s goose will be cooked, and she’ll probably be arrested for the theft that happened a few days before at the Grimstone Estate. Besides, there’s a reward for the intrepid crime busters who find the perpetrators of the robbery.
So, Lindy, her best friend, Margaret, and saxophonist Gus Kinnard team up to find the crooks. Lindy wants to get enough reward money to go to band camp this summer. Gus wants to show off his skills gained as a member of the computer-based Not-So-Clueless Crime Buster Club (NSCCB). And Margaret just wants to be a part of the band –and vindicate Granny Goose, of course. As I said, it’s good clean fun.
Does anyone remember the Alfred Hitchcock 3 Investigators series? This book reminded me of those books: simple plot, quirky suspects, and kids running around having fun.
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One or more of these books is also nominated for a Cybil Award, but the views expressed here are strictly my own.