This is one of Mother Daughter Book Reviews’ last Book Review Blitzes, and you probably know that I’ve got to know Julie partly through reading her excellent books, both this series and the Caramel Cardamom set, and through BookElves. Even so, this my honest, independent review. The fact that I keep reading her books tells you I really mean it.
Title: Frankie Dupont and High Seas Heist | Author: Julie Anne Grasso |Illustrator: Alexander Avellino | Publication Date: July 6, 2015 | Publisher: Independent | Pages: 148 | Recommended Ages: 8 to 12
Summary: Frankie Dupont seems to catch odd-ball cases in the most unlikely places. You would think he would be used to it by now. When his next case lands him on a luxury cruise liner full of devious chocolatiers with ulterior motives, Frankie will be expected to solve the crime, even before it’s committed. Although his mind is certainly up for the challenge, Frankie realises his stomach is yet to find its sea legs.
An illustrated mystery for ages 8-12
Frankie appears to be growing up. The youngest sleuth in the area seems happy to go along with his two female friends on a cruise. But it’s not any cruise – he’s been included along with his dad, also a PI, who’s been hired by the owner of the cruise company to protect her latest creation against sabotage or theft by one of the rivals. Of course, as this is the big launch, she’s invited all said rivals to rub their noses in it.
Frankie’s sleuthing is beset with technical difficulties, one of which I couldn’t quite work out, since he couldn’t get a satellite signal to check Interpol’s database, but his friends could text each other that the suspect had entered the swimming pool. On the other hand the rest of the painstakingly acquired evidence shows us exactly what we suspected in the first place, but couldn’t prove – and oh, there’s a twist which I didn’t really see coming, well not much, anyway!
It’s a delightful romp in delightful circumstances, with plenty of wackiness as befits a Frankie Dupont story. And it’s got penguins.
Which kind of takes us full circle, since I got to know most of my MG author friends thanks to the author of the Diary of a Penguin-Napper!
Highly recommended, and I think it’s even better than the previous one, but best if the books are read in sequence.