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REALLY TRULY by Heather Vogel Frederick


From the Pumpkin Falls Mystery series, volume 3

by Heather Vogel Frederick

Pub Date: June 30th, 2020
ISBN: 978-1-5344-1437-2
Publisher: Simon & Schuster

In this latest Pumpkin Falls Mystery, Truly Lovejoy reprises her role as a “middle school private eye.”

Anticipating a “perfect New Hampshire summer in Pumpkin Falls spent bird-watching, bike riding, swimming, working in her family’s bookstore, and hanging out with friends—especially crush Calhoun—Truly survives her family reunion and the town’s 4K race only to find herself unexpectedly exiled to Sirena’s Sea Siren Academy on Cape Cod. Here, she’s immersed in all things mermaid, learns to swim wearing a sparkly tail—and discovers a possible link between a real pirate and one of her Lovejoy ancestors. Returning to Pumpkin Falls, Truly alerts fellow sleuths in the Pumpkin Falls Private Eyes to the possibility of pirate treasure buried locally. Splitting time among investigating the pirate mystery, finding the town’s missing silver pumpkin trophy, and a summer production of The Pirates of Penzance, spunky Truly proves she’s up for just about anything. Her vulnerable, humorous first-person narration reveals minor family frustrations, her attraction to Calhoun, and her resolve when faced with a challenge. The pace drags during the opening family reunion sequence but accelerates at mermaid camp and culminates in an action-packed finale. Eccentric new and returning characters and the mermaid/pirate theme add spice to this family-oriented adventure. Truly and her family are white; diversity in Pumpkin Falls is mostly suggested via naming convention.

Pirates, mermaids, and more mystery in this satisfying return to Pumpkin Falls.

(recipe, suggested reading) (Mystery. 10-14)