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I SO DON'T DO MYSTERIES by Barrie Summy

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Sherry’s got typical seventh grade issues. She’s not so great at school and she’s got a serious crush on Josh, an uber cute eighth grader, and makes an unforgettable impression on him by bloodying his nose. Plus, her dad’s engaged to Paula, the math teacher at school, aka The Ruler. But if you’re thinking that I SO DON’T DO MYSTERIES is just another book about an everyday teen who just wants to be loved, you’d be so wrong. There’s nothing normal about Sherry’s spring break.

You see, Sherry had big plans for her break. Plans that involved sleeping in, shopping, and then more shopping with her best friend Junie. Until her dad told her that he and The Ruler have moved up their wedding date to this weekend. And she’ll have to spend her break in San Diego with her aging great-aunt. Course, that’s better than staying with her little brother at her dotty old grandma’s house. The same one who believes in ghosts and thinks she communicates with the spirits. Shoot, she even thinks her dead husband is a bird. How weird is that?

When Sherry goes outside to curl up in her favorite pear tree, her mother, (who, by the way, was killed in the line of duty a year and a half ago), shows up in a rush of wind and a cloud of coffee, and Sherry’s no longer sure what’s weird and what’s not. Even stranger, it turns out her mother needs her help solving a case of unauthorized banana treats at a rhino enclosure in, (you’ll never guess), San Diego! Her? Sherry? Go undercover? Think on her feet? Solve a mystery? No way. Sherry’s always been the one most likely to mess up, if she doesn’t freeze up first. But no matter how bizarre it all sounds, her mother needs her. Actually needs her!

It doesn’t take long to convince her dad to send Junie with her to San Diego, even if it does mean she’s also going to have to put up with Junie’s older cousin, Amber. Soon, Sherry’s up to her elbows in meringue and buckets of coffee, pounding the pavement like a regular ol’ sleuth till she’s got blisters on her feet. Who’s trying to kill the rhinos and why? Will she be able to find out in time to save them? Will her directionally challenged mother be able to find her so they can work together as she promised? Can she trust Junie with her secret? And what about Josh? Will he forget she even exists while she’s gone?

I SO DON’T DO MYSTERIES is a funny, engaging debut novel and Sherry’s antics will keep you turning pages since nothing happens as expected. Ms. Summy’s title suggest she so doesn’t do mysteries, but I believe she does them very, very well, and I surely hope she will be brewing up more mysteries for Sherry and her mother in the future.

This review was originally posted at www.teensreadtoo.com.
#1 - December 11, 2008, 05:15 PM

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