Monday, December 1, 2014

All About Middle Grade Review: The Ring of Rocamadour

The Ring of Rocamadour (Red Blazer Girls, 1) by Michael D. Beil, July 13, 2010. 298 pages. Published by Yearling. Source: Library.
It all began with The Scream. And ended with . . . well, if we told you that, it wouldn’t be a mystery! But in between The Scream and The Very Surprising Ending, three friends find themselves on a scavenger hunt set up for a girl they never met, in search of a legendary ring reputed to grant wishes. Are these sleuths in school uniforms modern-day equivalents of Nancy, Harriet, or Scooby? Not really, they’re just three nice girls who decide to help out a weird lady, and end up hiding under tables, tackling word puzzles and geometry equations, and searching rather moldy storage rooms for “the stuff that dreams are made of” (that’s from an old detective movie). Oh, and there’s A Boy, who complicates things. As boys often do.

Intrigued? The Red Blazer Girls offers a fun, twisty adventure for those who love mystery, math (c’mon, admit it!), and a modest measure of mayhem.
First Sentence:
For as far back as I can remember, I have told everyone I know that I am going to be writer.

This week, I have yet another one of my random library selections. As you've probably come to realize, I have this habit of picking up whatever happens to catch my eye while browsing the library's shelves.

Again, I managed to find not only a book I've never heard of but also a new to me author to take on a test run. While it most definitely was not the cover that caught my attention with this one, it was more that it was set at a Catholic school and a mystery that appealed to me. I was super curious as to how the author would incorporate the setting of the school and church into the mystery, as well, as how the girls would come together to solve the crime.
   So, while their were many elements that interested me going into The Ring of Rocamadour it could have gone either way in the enjoyment area. While I was unsure if the author could combine the various elements into a believable mystery, I found myself pleasantly surprised as I enjoyed the way the Red Blazer Girls came together and used their various talents to solve the mystery that they stumbled into. Even though I found it quite easy to ascertain who was plotting against the Red Blazer Girls and trying use their work on solving the mystery to attain the Ring of Rocamadour for themselves. Though it was still an interesting read as I enjoyed seeing how things played out.

As for the characters, I really enjoyed them because they had so much to offer to the overall story-line; also, I thought it was interesting to see how each of them had their own talent to bring to the game when it came to solving the mystery. It was nice because some books the roles are not evenly spread among the group leaving some to handle everything and some just there to round out the numbers. So, yeah, I enjoyed seeing each of the characters able to pull their own weight on getting things done.

When it comes to the writing, I really enjoyed Michael D. Beil's writing in The Ring of Rocamadour as I felt he did a great job with not only the characters but also with the plot. It was really just a super interesting read that kept me paging through it long after I should have called it a night. The writing and character development just really caught my attention and had me wanting to know what would happen next. It's just an overall really great read.

Final Verdict: The Ring of Rocamadour- Such a fun and witty read. The characters are definitely what makes this such an enjoyable read.

The Ring of Rocamadour earns

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