Renee at Mother Daughter Book Reviews has given a great review of Maisy and the Missing Mice! Check it out here or read it below!
My Thoughts: Meet Maisy. She’s a sassy, smart, lollipop-licking (only cherry, please), detective-in-the-making. Her latest case? The mascots of the school, some adorable little mice, have gone missing. And to add insult to injury, the thief also stole her stash of lollipops! It is up to Maisy to find the culprit, rescue the mice, recover her beloved lollipops, and figure out the reason why someone would abduct the pride of West Valley Elementary School.
I read this book aloud to both my kids (my 7 year-old son and my 10 year-old daughter) and we had a riot trying to piece together the clues to solve the mystery. The story brought me back to my Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys days, when I couldn’t resist a good mystery. To be clear though, this case was neither as complex nor as “heinous” as some of the Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys mysteries. A more appropriate comparison would be to the Nancy Drew and the Clue Crew mysteries for tweens.
We loved Maisy as the main character. We thought it was funny how her fee for services consisted of cherry lollipops ~ cherry, nothing else will do! The bigger the case, the more lollipops she gets. The author also did a great job of introducing and developing enough secondary characters so that the reader would have a few options for possible suspects. It really could have been more than one person who did it, until the villain was finally revealed. Very well done!
With respect to the plotline, I thought the author excelled at building the suspense, leaving clues, and creating false leads. My kids and I were constantly saying, “Aha! That’s a clue!” and we had many discussions trying to solve the mystery as the story unfolded. The denouement was very well done as well leaving us all feeling satisfied with the ending. I am notorious for stopping in the middle of a movie or reading aloud to point out plot holes, but I didn’t felt that way about Maisy and the Missing Mice. Everything really did come together in the end. It was a great little mystery with just enough tension for children.
Ok, I do have to raise one issue. We all know that I’m not so great at suspending disbelief (you know, like a typical adult) so I will say that I “reacted” when Maisy left the house in the evening, letting her parents think she was walking the dog, but actually going to meet a stranger at the school. Of course, I had to pause in my reading to ask my children, “You know you should never do that, right?” “We know MOM!!!” Yup, just checking… All of that being said, I agree that it was necessary for the story, so I’m willing to let it go!
My Bottom Line: Maisy and the Missing Mice is a fun chapter book featuring a smart and sassy tween girl as the title character; a solid and interesting plot featuring age-appropriate intrigue and suspense; and some terrific writing that carries the reader on a journey as a detective uncovering clues and solving the mystery of who stole the missing mice. I highly recommend this book as a read aloud book for children between the ages of 6 and 10 or for independent readers between the ages of 7 and 12 who love to read mysteries.
Elizabeth Woodrum's Blog
Elizabeth Woodrum is the author of the children's book series, The Maisy Files. She is also a full-time teacher and creator of teaching materials that can be found on Teachers Pay Teachers. This blog is a mix of teaching and author topics.