Here's the second post in my week celebrating the young crime solver.
The Case of the Deadly Desperados by Caroline Lawrence (June 2011, Orion Childrens ISBN 1444001698)
Review: Roman goddess Caroline Lawrence turns her hand to a new era and place: the Wild West of the 1860s. In this the first of the Western Mysteries the reader meets twelve-year-old PK Pinkerton. Part white, part Native-American and orphaned twice-over.
The book begins with PK stuck down a mine and not expecting to survive the day. PK's adventures are then chronicled from the murder of PK's foster parents and the flight to Virginia City, the home of silver mining, to escape the evil desperados who want something valuable from PK. PK meets many characters in Virginia City, including the reporter who became "Mark Twain", and not all of them are trustworthy. There are plenty of chase scenes and gunfights and along the way the reader gets to know more about PK's character and abilities, some useful, some handicapping before the final showdown.
What a fabulous idea this is having a young detective in the Wild West. I loved it. The action is non-stop and with almost every chapter ending on a cliff-hanger the pages just flew by. I loved learning about this time and setting, one which will be quite new to UK readers I imagine, touching on slavery, the US Civil War as well as mining. PK is an intriguing character and should have equal appeal to boys and girls.
I can't wait for the sequel to find out more about PK's new life and adventures.
Caroline Lawrence stopped by the blog last week to talk about the Good, the Bad and the Ugly. You can read her recap of the whole blog tour on the Western Mysteries blog.