cover image The Weekend Was Murder

The Weekend Was Murder

Joan Lowery Nixon. Delacorte Press Books for Young Readers, $15 (193pp) ISBN 978-0-385-30531-0

The latest offering from the prolific Nixon is a masterfully constructed, engaging read that will delight mystery fans and challenge readers new to the genre. Tall, klutzy Liz Rafferty is hoping to fade into the scenery during the Hotel Ridley's ``murder mystery weekend.'' But instead of simply performing her mundane summer-job duties as the hotel's health club monitor, she finds herself the center of attention. Being drafted by the acting troupe's leader to be the make-believe witness who discovers the ``body'' is bad enough, but when a real corpse shows up, Liz has to put aside her insecurities to help solve both murders. Ingeniously plotted, fast-paced and lighthearted, this mystery manages to blend an engrossing double murder brainteaser with the blossoming of a self-conscious teen into a self-assured young woman. Ages 12-up. (May)