Francie’s brother Theo has secrets—secrets Francie thinks she wants to know. But what if one of those secrets is that Theo is a murderer? To avoid considering that possibility, Francie plunges into her senior year at a small-town high school near Enchantment Lake in northern Minnesota. It’s a radical change from her private school in New York, but she hopes to keep an eye on her great aunts and maybe finally learn more about the mother she never knew. A small silver box seems to hold the answers, and she is determined to get her hands on it.
But when her long-lost brother turns up, so does a dead body, and once again Francie is drawn into a mystery. A long list of suspects, with Theo at the top, keeps her head spinning. When Francie herself becomes a suspect she starts to feel like she is walking on thin ice, but it isn’t until she is literally walking on thin ice that the pieces start to come together—and by then it may be too late.
In her previous adventure Enchantment Lake, Francie was thrown into northern Minnesota lake living: fishing, berry picking, lost kayaks and scary boat rides, poisoned hotdishes, exploding bulldozers, a forest fire . . . and murder. But if she thinks things have settled down, she’s in for a surprise. A new school with new friends (and a few enemies), a lead role in a play, an encounter with a giant muskie, archaeological twists, secret tunnels, thin ice, and a strangely sticky murder are all coming her way in The Clue in the Trees.
I really enjoyed the first novel in this kids/YA series, ENCHANTMENT LAKE, so I was thrilled to get this new on via Net Galley. Francie continues her adventures and solves the mystery. I have to admit to enjoying the first book more than this one (not sure why – I think I found it easier to follow the plot line of the mystery) but both can stand alone and both are “clean reads” for the young people in your life who enjoy a mystery.
We are thinking of adding one of these titles to our reading list for middle school this year as the kids were asking for a mystery.
Thank you for my review e-copy! I have to say that every book I have ever received from University of Minnesota Press has been well-written, appropriate, and engaging.