cover image The Hotel Whodunit (Goldie Vance #1)

The Hotel Whodunit (Goldie Vance #1)

Lilliam Rivera, illus. by Elle Power. Little, Brown, $14.99 (264p) ISBN 978-0-316-45664-7

In this middle grade debut by Rivera (Dealing in Dreams) based on the beloved comics series, Goldie Vance, 16, may officially be a valet at the Cross Palm Resort in St. Pascal, Fla., where she lives part-time with her hotel manager father, but she considers her real title house detective in training. Lucky for Goldie, the actual hotel detective, Walt, gives in to her request to help out with a big movie filming at both the Cross Palm and the Mermaid Club, where Goldie’s mother works as one of the pool mermaids. The movie features megastar Delphine, an actress whom vivacious Goldie quickly befriends, and the Bejeweled Aqua Chapeau, a diamond-encrusted swim cap worth over a million dollars. When the cap goes missing and Goldie’s mom becomes the top suspect, Goldie resolves to solve the case. Though Goldie’s narration frequently sounds young for a 16-year-old, the hotels make great settings for intrigue, and the teen’s world is filled with entertaining characters, including her crush, Diane. Goldie’s endless optimism and belief in herself inspire while creating amusing moments in this satisfying gumshoe mystery. Comic book inserts by animator Power further enliven action-packed segments. Final art not seen by PW. Ages 8–12. [em](Mar.) [/em]