Sunday, 15 February 2015

Marsh Road Mysteries: Diamonds And Daggers, by Elen Caldecott. Reviewed by Saviour Pirotta

Title: Marsh Road Mysteries: Diamonds And Daggers
Author: Elen Caldecott
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Publication date: 5 February 2015

I have always loved a good detective story and, as a child, read Enid Blyton and Malcolm Saville's various whodunnits several times over. It wasn't just the sleuthing that attracted me to these books but also the caramaderie of the participants and the feeling that, by reading the stories, I became an unofficial member of the club.

Elen Caldecott's first book in The Marsh Road Mysteries series evokes the same strong feelings but brings a sassy and urban vibe to the genre. Here are five juvenile detectives that reflect the socio-cultural zeitgeist: Piotr, Minnie, Flora, Andrew and Sylvie.  They live in an inncer-city environment of shops, cafes, markets stalls, lock-ups  - and a theatre.  It's the theatre that provides the backdrop to their first adventure.

A world-megastar called Betty Massino has come to Marsh Road to star in a play. A thief makes off with her hugely expensive diamond necklace and Piotr's dad, who works as the security manager at the theatre, is the main suspect. He's so distraught by the accusation that he decides to take his family back to Poland. Which means that the fabulous five have a very short time frame in which to find the real cuplrit and prove his innocence.

The story is a breathless pageturner with an ending that will have you cheking amazon to find when the next installment of the Marsh Road Mysteries is due.

Reviewed by Saviour Pirotta

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