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Arthur lives above Universal Trash, a used goods store, with his Mom, Dad, and little sister, Ramona. Their grandparents, who started the store, live nearby. Ramona’s pet mouse dies, and suddenly Arthur has a roommate — a mouse ghost named Watson. Grandma is on an extended vacation, and Grandpa is cranky.

Arthur finds an old cup, and his grandfather tells him it was stolen long ago. Then Arthur discovers there have been other thefts, but he doesn’t tell anyone (except Watson) because he really wants to solve the mystery himself. Shortly after Grandma comes home, she discovers her pearl necklace is missing. Veda, Arthur’s best friend, stops coming around after Grandpa makes some racist remarks. Arthur has a lot of things to solve. Is he up to it?

Martha Freeman has written a fun mystery populated with interesting, believable characters and set in and around a junk store, which contributes greatly to the story, being a good place to find mysteries. Arthur is a terrific main character — a little flawed, but learning and showing growth. The writing is excellent. The dialogue is snappy and just right for the various characters. Middle-graders will love this fun mystery.

Reviewed By:

Author Martha Freeman
Star Count 5/5
Format Hard
Page Count 304 pages
Publisher Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books
Publish Date 17-Jan-2023
ISBN 9781665905350 Buy this Book
Issue February 2024
Category Children's