Launching the History Mysteries series, this swiftly paced, light novel takes readers to Louisiana during the War of 1812. After Elisabet Holder's widower father, the wealthy London-born captain of a merchant ship, is captured by the British, the 11-year-old travels from their home in Boston to New Orleans to live with her aunt and uncle. Once there, Elisabet learns that the family has fallen on hard times and she is expected to work in the couple's bakery. Accustomed to servants, the girl initially scoffs at the idea of working but soon adapts to her new life and forms a friendship with her co-worker and roommate. When a shady character stops into the bakery and conveniently mentions a hidden treasure map, Elisabet sees a way to procure her father's ransom. As a mystery, this is lean on suspense and intrigue, yet Buckey conveys a credible sense of time and place. Taking a cue from the American Girls Collection books, the volume concludes with a section, "Looking Back: 1814," that describes the American political scene as well as the cultural and social climate of French-influenced New Orleans.