DOWN THE RABBIT HOLE: An Echo Falls Mystery

Peter Abrahams, Author . HarperCollins/Geringer $15.99 (375p) ISBN 978-0-06-073701-6

The charming 13-year-old heroine of Abrahams's (A Perfect Crime , for adults) murder mystery will guide readers through its many twists and turns. Ingrid Levin-Hill, who, like her hero Sherlock Holmes, is "a habitual noticer of little things," has just been cast as the lead in Alice in Wonderland when she finds herself in a different role—murder detective. The corpse is that of "Cracked-Up Katie," whom Ingrid encountered when she attempted to get from her orthodontist to soccer practice—and wound up five miles away in the poorest part of Echo Falls. The next day, the local paper states that Katie's body was found soon after Ingrid left her house; realizing she's left her red soccer cleats behind, Ingrid breaks in to retrieve them. But she's not the only one in Katie's house that evening. Ingrid's sleuthing is complicated by a budding romance with the police chief's son, and the dialogue crackles with wit—Ingrid gets the best lines. It's disquieting, however, that big brother Ty, the football star, blackens Ingrid's eye in anger without repercussion, and many of the supporting characters are more fully developed than her nuclear family; the town's newspaper editor, her curmudgeonly Grampy and even Cracked-Up Katie come across as more convincing. And dropped threads abound(e.g., will Grampy stave off developers by populating his farmland with endangered eastern spadefoot toads?) Readers who stick with this intelligent, if overstuffed novel will be clamoring for answers—and more of Ingrid. Ages 10-up. (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 04/04/2005
Release date: 04/01/2005
Genre: Children's
Peanut Press/Palm Reader - 448 pages - 978-0-06-189120-5
Prebound-Glued - 407 pages - 978-0-7569-8273-7
Open Ebook - 448 pages - 978-0-06-189093-2
Paperback - 339 pages - 978-1-4063-0028-4
Library Binding - 375 pages - 978-0-06-073702-3
Compact Disc - 978-0-06-078664-9
Prebound-Glued - 407 pages - 978-1-4177-3233-3
Mass Market Paperbound - 407 pages - 978-0-06-073703-0
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