cover image The Sherlock Society (The Sherlock Society #1)

The Sherlock Society (The Sherlock Society #1)

James Ponti. Aladdin, $18.99 (352p) ISBN 978-1-6659-3253-0

Inspired in part by their last name, 12-year-old Alex Sherlock and his 13-year-old sister Zoe, joined by their retired reporter grandfather and friends Yadi and Lina, found the Sherlock Society detective agency in a bid to earn money over the summer. When their initial attempts to rustle up business fail, they pivot toward investigating one of Grandpa’s cold cases surrounding Al Capone’s legendary lost fortune “buried somewhere in south Florida.” As they follow decades-old clues across Miami and into the Everglades, the Sherlock Society encounters contemporary crimes pertaining to illegal waste dumping, prompting them to seek out the culprits. While Grandpa instructs the Sherlock Society in the ways of reporting and investigation, Ponti (Mission Manhattan) keeps things authentic with the invocation of laws and proper procedure in their pursuit to take down a powerful, wealthy foe. With an eye for atmosphere, history, and lively humor, Ponti brings the South Florida setting, as well as its quick-witted inhabitants, to vivid life, making for a worthy successor to classic kid mysteries that’s entertaining, educational, and exciting. Yadi cues as being of Cuban heritage; other characters read as white. Ages 8–12. Agent: Rosemary Stimola, Stimola Literary Studio. (Sept.)