Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Investigative Girls: Lindy Blues and Hannah West

It's a pleasure to highlight two new strong girl heroes for young mystery readers.

Dorian Cirrone's early reader heroine Lindy Blues AKA "Your Nose for News" is an investigative TV journalist who reports to readers (and her neighborhood) in a humorous, upbeat voice. Smart, sassy, and charmingly illustrated in pencil by Liza Woodruff, the Lindy Blues books are a great match for younger middle graders. Look for Lindy Blues: The Big Scoop (Marshall Cavendish, 2006) and Lindy Blues: The Missing Silver Dollar (Marshall Cavendish, 2006). Ages 7-up.

Linda Johns' young detective Hannah West moves from one Seattle neighborhood to another with her housesitter mother and her fish. Well grounded in setting, this middle grade series is a fun, entertaining read. Here we have a Chinese-American heroine (internationally and transracially adopted) in a genre book where her ethnicity is not the focus. We need more diversity throughout the body of literature, not just in books with traditional multicultural themes. Look for Hannah West in Deep Water (Puffin, 2006), Hannah West in the Belltown Towers (Puffin, 2006). Ages 9-up.

Cynsational Notes

Mystery fans seeking more suggestions should check out Bringing Mysteries Alive for Children and Young Adults by Jeanette Larson (Linworth, 2004)(recommendation).

Author Interview: Dorian Cirrone from Cynsations. This interview highlights Dorian's YA novel, Dancing In Red Shoes Will Kill You (HarperCollins, 2005), which was recognized via the Amelia Bloomer list for feminist fiction; New York Public Library's Best Books for the Teen Age 2006; and the Tayshas List (Texas State Reading List).

See also Children's and YA Books with Interracial Family Themes from my website.

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