Monday, February 28, 2011

Book Review: The Midnight Tunnel

A mysterious adventure of self-discovery that reveals shocking secrets!

It is 1905 and young Suzanna works at her family's inn in Loch Harbor, New Brunswick, where she is trained to be a well-mannered hostess and a charming lady. Suzanna has other ideas for her future--she wants to be a detective. When a young guest goes missing on a stormy summer night, Suzanna's famous detective uncle, and idol, comes to solve the case. But Suzanna learns that not everything is as it seems. With a little help from her friends, can she solve the mystery of the missing girl before her uncle gives up?

--From Goodreads

Cover Inspection:
I LOVE this cover! It is dark, brooding, and yet completely intriguing. If you didn't know Suzanna worked in an inn you wouldn't know why she is coming out the wall either!

First Thoughts:
Suzanna seems like my kind of girl. Smart, and slightly accident prone.


My Review:
Suzanna, or Zanna as she prefers, was one of the most fun, intelligent and witty young protagonists that I've had the pleasure of reading in a long time. Angie Frazier aims The Midnight Tunnel at the middle grade reader, but what I loved is that she didn't sacrifice anything to do that. This book has tons of crossover appeal, and anyone who loves a good mystery coupled with historical fiction will fall in love. Beware the rambling my friends, so it begins.

First let me tell you why I loved Suzanna so much. Her mother and father want her to be a well behaved young woman. They hope that she will follow in their footsteps and want to run the inn. Unfortunately for them, and fortunately for us, Suzanna has a much different path in mind! She wants to be a world renown detective like her Uncle Bruce. For that, I love her. She's a little bit rebel, and a whole lot of trouble without meaning to be. I instantly fell in love with her wit, her inability to stay away from trouble, and her downright brilliant deductions! Young or old, readers will definitely find something to connect to in her character.

In terms of story, as I mentioned above there is an entire mystery wrapped up in these pages! When a young guest goes missing, Suzanna takes it upon herself to unravel the mystery. Those of you who are older readers might be worried that this book will be too "young" for you. Let me tell you this. I read mystery novels and I generally solve mystery novels about half way through. This one? I was guessing until almost the very end. As I said, Angie Frazier doesn't sacrifice one bit for her audience. I like that she doesn't find it necessary to "dumb things down" for a middle grade reader. Utterly fantastic. I wish I could say more, but I've already had to delete so much to keep this spoiler free.

I ended up having to put The Midnight Tunnel down for a few days last week to take care of other commitments, and I tell you that it killed me to do it! I kept wondering how everything was going to end. What Angie Frazier has written here is a stunning mystery that is wrapped up in a very middle grade friendly package. I enjoyed each and every minute of this book and I can't wait to read the next one! I know Suzanna will keep on doing her detective work, and I'll be there to follow along.

Book Details
Title: The Midnight Tunnel (Suzanna Snow #1)
Author: Angie Frazier
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Pages: Hardcover; 288
Source: Received for promotional tour.
FTC Disclosure: I received a review copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Final Rating: 5 Keys to My Heart


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