She’s only 11, but she’s smarter and better informed than most adults, and she’s determined to solve mysteries for a living.
Friday’s academician parents barely even know she’s there, and that suits Friday just fine. She tries to avoid contact with people as she pursues her own interests, which include reading her parents’ entire extensive library. But when she solves a mystery for her detective uncle and wins $50,000, she decides to spend it on a year in the area’s most prestigious boarding school. There, she finds she can’t blend in, but she also becomes embroiled in various mysteries that she solves with the aplomb of Sherlock Holmes. She irritates the school headmaster, among others, with her know-it-all attitude but makes a good friend in her roommate, Melanie, a girl who constantly notices small details—a trait that will help Friday in her detective pursuits. From solving petty crimes and finding missing homework, she moves on to an enthusiastic investigation of the monster hiding in the school swamp. Spratt begins this new series with a nifty, engaging protagonist who can keep readers laughing and help young geeks feel good about themselves. Friday and Melanie make a great team that clearly will continue to detect their way through the coming sequel. Gosier's animation-inflected illustrations are a nice complement.
Delightful, highly logical, and well-informed fun. (Mystery. 8-12)