Author: Kristi Holl
Publication: Zonderkidz (December 21, 2010)
Description: Lonely and a long way from her Iowa home, twelve-year-old Jeri McKane reacts to boarding school the way most middle schoolers would. Even with close friends, she wonders whether her scholarship to prestigious Landmark School was worth it. She's tempted to give up when her Mom can't make parents' weekend, and the school bus carrying her roommate, Rosa, disappears. But this reporter for the sixth-grade newspaper has an eye like Nancy Drew and more faith and courage than she realizes. Jeri solves the mystery---and makes landmark decisions to trust God and his Word through circumstances and feelings that don't make sense.
My Thoughts: This book is the first in the Faithgirlz mystery series. Jeri is disappointed when her mother tells her that she is unable to visit her at boarding school for parents day but that disappointment is quickly overshadowed when her roommates bus doesn't return from a field trip and no one knows what happened to them. Jeri was interested in becoming an investigative reporter after they had a visit from one at the school. So Jeri begins to try to figure out what happened to Rosa and the other students.
Jeri collects clues and solves the problem. There are lots of suspicious people and events for her to sort out. She almost gets lost in a blizzard while following a clue too.
This was a very nice middle grade mystery that is also the start of a series. I thought the story was well-written and realistic. I did wonder at times about how Jeri could investigate without some adult checking on her whereabouts a few times though. I recommend them for middle graders who like mysteries.
"You want to crack the case by yourself. You think you're a junior investigative reporter." Nikki pushed her cowboy hat back off her forehead. "You're obstructing justice. By not telling you put Rosa and everybody in danger longer. Why? This isn't about you, Jeri."Source: Free for the Kindle on Feb. 1, 2011