By: Leslie Margolis
Publication Date: October 2010
Reviewed by: Amy Lignor
Review Date: November 15, 2010
Maggie Brooklyn Sinclair loves her after-school job as a dog-walker. She absolutely loves canines, and has a couple of clients who trust her whole-heartedly with their beloved pets. Maggie also has a twin brother named Finn, who is a good friend of hers as well as a brother who is very supportive. Their parents had lived in Manhattan for quite a while before they were born, but then with the imminent arrival of her and her brother, their parents moved to Brooklyn in order to save money. Mom is a lawyer and Dad is a director of documentaries, who is now working on one that’s based on Brooklyn baseball.
The landlord of their brownstone apartment building is a woman by the name of Isabel. She has an Irish wolfhound by the name of Preston, who Maggie takes for walks (free of charge), in order to help Isabel who has recently injured her knee. Maggie attends Fiske Street Junior High which is located in the Park Slope Neighborhood in Brooklyn. She has many friends and truly likes a young man by the name of Milo. In fact, she goes directly to him at the local run-down pizza place in order to get Milo to converse with her, and almost dies of embarrassment. Her best friend was, once upon a time, named Ivy – who suddenly decided that she wanted to be “popular” and left Maggie in the dust in order to hook up with another gang and gain more popularity in school.
As the mystery begins to unfold, Maggie notices that dogs are disappearing from the local Park and letters are appearing from literally nowhere that alert owners they must pay ransom in order to get their dogs back. One of the animals missing is Ivy’s, and Maggie realizes this when she catches Ivy trying to steal some of her dog-walking money in order to pay off the blackmailers who took her pet. Even though their friendship has been harmed, Ivy and Maggie join forces to try and uncover the guilty kidnapper and get the dog back safely.
Not only is there a dog-knapper on the loose, but Isabel – the landlord – seems to be hiding a secret all her own that has something to do with a hidden passage inside the old Brooklyn Brownstone; and, a strangely acting veterinarian is also in the area who seems a bit worried and on edge every time Maggie brings Isabel’s wolfhound in for a check-up.
The conversations, plot, characters, and red-herrings that are offered in this fantastic story makes this extremely fun for all young readers.
Quill says: I’m not quite sure when the Young Adult mysteries became more fun and interesting than the adult ones, but this is definitely one of those stories. I believe that Maggie Brooklyn could become the next Nancy Drew fairly quickly, and introduce fun, exciting stories to YA’s across the globe.