Sunday 10 January 2016

Cinnamon Stevens Crime Buster

Cinnamon Stevens Crime Buster by Pauline Hosking (Lilly Pilly Publishing)
PB RRP $16.99
ISBN 978-099439826-0
Reviewed by Kel Butler

Cinnamon Stevens wants nothing more in life than to be a crime buster, a super sleuth, the world’s greatest detective. Just like her dad…and her brother. So when classmate, Becki, disappears without a trace from school camp one night, Cinnamon sees it as her big chance to crack the case. Recruiting the help of friends Meera and Cossie, the girl brigade embark on a hapless adventure of twists and turns, chasing down criminals and steering themselves straight into the heart of danger. Will this team of amateur sleuths find Becki and save the day? Or has Cinnamon bitten off more danger than she can handle?

Cinnamon Stevens Crime Buster is a fun whodunit chapter book, for the 10 plus age group, with a definite skew towards girls. Written in a diarized format, complete with footnotes and diagrams, this book is Cinnamon’s own account of the case of the missing Becki.

Cinnamon is an interesting character, caught between a strong sense of purpose, a desperate need to prove herself and the insecurities teenage girls struggle with the world over. Before she can unravel the case and prove her detective skills, Cinnamon needs to face her own fears, overcome her anxieties and learn to trust herself. This is as much an everyday story of friendship, family and acceptance, as it is a kidnapping mystery.

Cinnamon Steven’s Crime Buster is Pauline Hosking’s first book but certainly not her first piece of writing for this age group. Pauline has a long history of writing plays for children, teens and adults and as I type this review she is writing Cinnamon’s next big adventure…

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