The Mysterious Disappearance of Leon (I Mean Noel)
Ellen Raskin (Juvenile Mystery)
It’s a funny thing about names. Some are long, some are short; some mean something, others don’t; but everyone and everything has one, or two or three.
Caroline “Little Dumpling” Fish Carillon has quite the backstory for someone so young. She was married at five years old (business is business, after all), orphaned at twelve, and widowed (maybe…no one is quite sure) at nineteen. Throw in twins, an unfortunate incarceration, a cross-country manhunt, and a watery clue that seems practically insolvable and you have a mystery for the ages! With the help of the glub blubs, Mrs. Carillon is quite sure that she’ll be able to find Leon (I mean Noel).
The Mysterious Disappearance of Leon (I Mean Noel) is the perfect read for any young detective. Raskin provides readers with plenty of clues along our heroine’s journey of finding her lost love. While her Newberry Medal mystery The Westing Game can easily be enjoyed by older readers, this book is clearly written for a younger audience. The Mysterious Disappearance of Leon (I Mean Noel) provides pages and pages of slapstick fun and silly good humor. It’s delightful in its utter absurdity and endearing in its over-the-top implausibility. Readers are encouraged to sleuth along with Mrs. Carillon and her twins—Tina and Tony—and are helpful tips and hints make for a totally immersive reading experience.
Throughout Raskin’s book, Mrs. Carillon is forever searching for what she thought she wanted. Endlessly chasing an idea that she thought she needed. American author Meg Cabot—best known for The Princess Diaries—wrote “Sometimes what you want is right in front of you. All you have to do is open your eyes and see it.” Ironically, it was only after Mrs. Carillon stopped chasing a dream that she was able to find her heart.
*Book cover image attributed to www.amazon.com
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