Title: the jane austen investigates: the burglar’s ball.
AUTHOR: Julia Golding.
GENRE: Children’s Fiction, Middle Grade, Mystery.
PUBLICATION DATE: October 22nd, 2021.
Nancy Drew. Enola Holmes. Sally Lockhart. Move over girls, it’s Jane’s time!
Join young budding detective Jane Austen in her second investigation to uncover a devious diamond thief at the glitziest, most scandalous ball of the year! Inspired by Sense and Sensibility.
‘No one who had ever seen Jane Austen in her infancy would suppose her to be born to solve crimes. From her early love of sugar plums, and cleverness in hiding her expeditions into the pantry, her mother declared her far more likely to commit them. However, as Jane would counter, there was no better person to identify the culprit than the thief turned thief-catcher.’
When the headmistress invites her past favourite pupil to attend their end of term ball, Cassandra brings her younger sister, Jane, along too. Cassandra plunges into the feverish excitement of preparing for the biggest event of the year – the dresses, the dances and the boys expected from the neighbouring school.
Feeling rather excluded, sharp-witted Jane unearths the reason for the fuss – the headteacher wants to impress a rich family returned from India as the school is at risk of going bankrupt. Jane also befriends the dancing master’s assistant, a former slave, called Brandon, who is as quick to notice things as she. At the ball, a diamond necklace is stolen from a locked room and they are propelled into a race to uncover the burglar and save Brandon from gaol.
With the ever-present Austen spirit, Jane with notebook in hand, boldly overcomes the obstacles to finding the truth.
Perfect for readers aged 9-109, and for fans of Katherine Woodfine and Lucy Worsley.
Thanks to NetGalley and Lion Hudson Ltd for letting me read this book prior to its publication. My opinion is 100% honest, unbiased, and my own.
I got a copy of this book because I had read and loved the first book in the series. But I am sorry to say this new Jane Austen Investigates story missed the mark and was quite a disappointment. While the previous book kept me reading non-stop, I had trouble to get into this one.
I am aware this book was written for MG readers, but I found the plot to be too simple and the ending was quite easy to guess and predict.
Even the character of young Jane Austen felt different in this book. I wanted to see more spunk and energy in her behavior and actions, but it felt like a washed out version of the same character in the first book.
We get to see more characters taken from Jane Austen novels among the cast. In this cast, the homage was paid to Sense and Sensibility. That part of the story was very well crafted and I really enjoyed it.
Overall, a quick read for the weekend.
So, for all of that, I give this book… 3 TEA CUPS!