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Secret Lettersby Leah Scheier
Synopses & Reviews
Inquisitive and observant, Dora dreams of escaping her aristocratic country life to solve mysteries alongside Sherlock Holmes. So when she learns that the legendary detective might be her biological father, Dora jumps on the opportunity to travel to London and enlist his help in solving the mystery of her cousin's ransomed love letters. But Dora arrives in London to devastating news: Sherlock Holmes is dead. Her dreams dashed, Dora is left to rely on her wits — and the assistance of an attractive yet enigmatic young detective — to save her cousin's reputation and help rescue a kidnapped heiress along the way.
Steeped in Victorian atmosphere and intrigue, this gripping novel heralds the arrival of a fresh new voice in young adult literature.
"After losing both parents, 16-year-old Dora finds a letter that reveals her real father was Sherlock Holmes. Dora determines to become a detective like him, but when a chance mystery involving her cousin takes her to London, she discovers that Holmes is dead. Though saddened, Dora is emboldened to prove the apple does not fall far from the tree. Soon, her cousin's rather benign mystery lands Dora in the middle of a much bigger one — the daughter of an earl has been kidnapped — and into the path of the handsome young detective Peter Cartwright, once apprenticed to her late father. Together, the two investigate the kidnapping, with Dora posing as a maid in the earl's house to gather clues. In a mystery with twists, the threat of danger, and a dramatic resolution, debut author Scheier offers a tenacious heroine determined to rise above the restrictions of her gender to claim her legacy. Upbeat, witty prose results in a fun beginning to what looks like the first of more adventures for this young pair of investigators. Ages 12 — up. Agent: Irene Kraas, Kraas Literary Agency. (June)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Sixteen-year-old Dora Joyce 'collects secrets like stamps' and is more interested in solving local crimes than in the latest fashions of the season. So when her cousin's love letters are stolen and held for ransom, Dora accompanies her to London to enlist the help of detective Sherlock Holmes — who, coincidentally, may be Dora's biological father. Dora's dreams of meeting him are dashed upon arrival: Sherlock Holmes has been killed in Switzerland. What now? Well, it turns out that there's an enigmatic and handsome former-Sherlock apprentice waiting in the wings, and he enlists Dora's help in solving a case involving a kidnapped heiress. Scheier's debut wonderfully captures the flickering gaslights and sooty fireplaces of Victorian England, and the plot, an ode to all things Sherlockian, paces nicely, with enough twists and turns to keep even seasoned mystery-loving young readers hooked. The subplot about the cousin's missing letters never feels vitally important to the events at hand and is forgotten from time to time, but no matter. With secret codes, illicit love affairs, disguises, deception, and murder — not to mention an intriguing leading man and feisty, smart heroine — what's not to love?" Booklist
About the Author
Leah Scheier was born and raised in Baltimore, MD. As a child, she was inspired by her favorite authors, Arthur Conan Doyle, Lloyd Alexander, and C.S. Lewis to dream up tales of adventure and romance. Now grown up with daughters of her own, Leah works as a pediatrician and continues to create new stories. Leah and her family divide their time between Atlanta, Georgia and Modiin, Israel. Secret Letters is her first novel.
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