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Friday, 23 August 2013

The Case of the Phantom Cat (Maisie Hitchins) - Holly Webb

The Case of the Phantom Cat - Maisie Hitchins 3

From best-selling author Holly Webb comes a brand new series full of mystery and intrigue following the adventures of a very determined heroine and her dog! Holly Webb fans will be thrilled to pieces to discover the adventures of Maisie Hitchins, the pluckiest little detective in Victorian London. Maisie Hitchins lives in her grandmother's boarding house, longing for adventure. She idolizes the famous detective, Gilbert Carrington, and follows his every case. Together with her faithful pup Eddie, she is determined to follow even the slightest scent of a mystery - no matter what! Maisie's best friend, Alice, has been convalescing at home for some time when her father sends both the girls to a country estate. But they are warned that the place is haunted, and sure enough, peculiar things start to happen on their arrival. With strange noises and smells waking the girls in the night and an unexpected sighting of a ghostly-cat form, Maisie knows it's time for her to get her magnifying glass out!

The third book in the new series by Holly Webb. I have previously reviewed the first two books here. Reminding me of Enid Blyton's Famous Five and Secret Seven, with a hint of Victorian history sprinkled throughout, this is a great series for children who love to solve mysteries.

In this book Maisie is invited to accompany her friend, Alice, who has been ill, to stop in a country house, to assist her in her recovery. Maisie is a below stairs girls whereas Alice is the daughter of a rich man and lives in a household who has staff, however Alice and Maisie are good friends and while away at the country house Alice enjoys the household tasks, when the staff are frightened away by the 'ghosts'.  The girls spend their days carrying out the daily tasks and also try to discover what the real story is with the phantom cat. 

It is a great story and I really think this is going to be a popular series of books. Although it is has a female main character I still believe that this series will be loved by both boys and girls alike.  It is suitable for children aged 9+. There are illustrations dotted throughout the book by Marion Lindsay and these are also great - they accompany the story fantastically and also depict the Victorian era, both within the setting and also the dress. It would make a great book to read within a class who are learning about the Victorian era.

Thank you to the publishers, Stripes Publishing, for sending me the book to review.

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