Monday, October 27, 2008

What Mrs. N's Been Reading - First Shot and The New Policeman

I've been out for a bit while in the process of moving, and am a bit behind in postings. I (fairly) recently finished 2 good ones. The first one was Kate Thompson's The New Policeman. It is based on old Irish folklore about fairies. Everyone in the village of Kinvara seems to be far more rushed and behind then usual, and it seems to be getting worse. Young J.J. wants to give his mom the only thing she really wants - more time. An encounter with a neighbor from the village sets him off on a mission to find and stop a time leak in the land of fairies where time usually stands still. Along the way J.J. also clears up a mystery from his family's past involving the sudden disappearance and presumed murder of the local priest. There are a fair number of Irish terms used that you could get the general gist of the meaning of as you read, but a glossary is also provided at the end of the book (thank you!) Suitable for any age, it's a nice mix of fantasy and mystery that, being based on the Irish folklore, is a bit different from the usual fantasy. Chapters are incredibly short, so it's good for reluctant readers. And for those who are musically inclined, there is sheet music for old Irish tunes at the beginning of each chapter. A very good book with some different twists.

I also read Walter Sorrells' First Shot. I recently read, and liked very much, his Fake ID. First Shot was another good mystery. This one takes place at a private school in New England, where David is the unremarkable son of the strict headmaster. Events at the beginning of his senior year lead David to suspect that his father may have murdered his mother two years previously, an awfully tough spot for a kid to be in! While working to solve his mother's murder, David also uncovers some additional scandalous secrets. There's a little bit of language in this one, but not too bad and nothing graphic. I thought this one wrapped up a little too quickly at the end ( the old, "you have this many pages left - tie up all your loose ends now" ending) but still thought it was a very good mystery.


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