HOW TO BE A DETECTIVE IN 10 EZ STEPS
Middle Grade Mystery
Bright and bold in both appearance and manner, 10-year-old Hispanic fashionista-entrepreneur Celia Narro reluctantly moves to a small lakeshore town upstate, worlds away from her best friend Indira and their glamorous life on New York City’s upper west side. Amid culture shock, Celia finds refuge in a secret room hidden behind her new bedroom closet that is both a legacy from the Underground Railroad and a key to a long-lost local treasure. Celia views this treasure as her one-way ticket straight back to New York City, but the search pulls her into a battle with jealous fellow 5th grader Jane Archer and Jane’s strange uncle Theo Rathbone, a member of a secret society who makes no attempt to hide his dislike for “illegal aliens”.
With the help of 10-year-old junior archaeologist and part-time Renaissance knight Joe Eli, Celia nearly has the treasure in her grasp when Joe, her one new friend, disappears. To find him Celia must choose between the treasure and Joe by reaching out to her nemesis, Jane Archer. In this modern mystery Celia, a Fancy-Nancy-meets-Nancy-Drew heroine, puts her knowledge of fashion and fabrics to work as she unravels the secrets of communicating with a boy and making friends in a new place while discovering the different forms treasure can take.
This story is set in the form of a how-to book for beginning detectives with an ethnically diverse cast of characters, strong heroine and historic elements. The “instructional” passages at the beginning of each chapter not only explain the steps in developing basic detective skills, they also provide a dash of humor, additional clues, and red herrings (as the case may be).
This is my first children's manuscript. My first draft won first place in its category in the 2011 Pacific Northwest Literary Contest. I am a wife of one and mom of two, with a B.A. in journalism and a minor in graphic design fromMichigan State University. After spending over 20 years in the marketing profession, I am willing and able to support this book in any way you deem valuable.
Yes you too can be a world-famous detective, even if you are still going to school full-time! Fame, fortune, adventure and mystery, they are all here just waiting for you to reach out and grab them by their glittery collars. When you’ve successfully completed these 10 easy steps you’ll be an agency classified Level MG1A, with a certificate to prove it. But first things first, before you can begin your training you have to find a mystery. Mysteries come in all shapes and sizes, just like people. They can be new little mysteries, like who your teacher will be next year, or they can be ancient mysteries that are all twisted and bent like an old apple tree. And, like people, you can find them anywhere – in the clouds, in your cereal bowl, or in an old musty letter. . .
Pultneyville, New York
March 1, 1939
My Dear Langley,
It seems like only yesterday that you, a lad of 14 with Irish eyes, washed up near my doorstep with the last few bits of your ship. The war between the states was winding down and the unspoken war was winding up. If we had known it would continue on to this very day would we have just said the devil with it and sought a kinder shore? I flatter myself in thinking not.
Regardless, our fighting days are over and it’s time for someone else to pick up our swords and fight on.