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Sammy Keyes and the Curse of Moustache Mary…

Sammy Keyes and the Curse of Moustache Mary

by Wendelin Van Draanen

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This book starts of with Sammy, Holly, and Marissa traveling through the city trying to get to their friend Dot's house, where they would be staying this New Years' weekend at. Since Sammy's skateboard was stolen, she had to ride on Marissa's handlebars. As they are riding they accidently crash into some guys on skateboards and as usual Sammy gets hurt. Once they get to Dot's house they decide to help her dad make a delivery. On the way to do the delivery they meet an old woman in the road who is walking her big, black pig. The woman's name is Lucinda Huntley and Penny is her pig. They are on their way to the Murdock's, which is where Mr.Dvries is making the delivery to. Since Mr.Dvries runs a nursery, he thinks he is making a delivery to a fancy party. When they get to the Murdock home they realize it is not a party, it's a funeral! Once they are inside, and when no one is looking, Lucinda climbs on a chair, opens the coffin and has a talk with the dead man. It turns out that Lucinda's great, great-grandmother Mary Rose Huntley had set off on a wagon train as a pioneer to come to Californian. She had come when her son was ten years old and since she was a widow she had to disguise herself in a moustache and men clothes so she would be able to go. The Murdock's great, great-grandparents were also on the trip. One of them found out Mary was a woman and told the whole wagon train. Thus came the name Moustache Mary. After they found out Mary was a woman bad things began to happen on the trail and the Murdocks blamed it on Mary saying she had cursed the trip. One day when food was scarce Mary caught a Murdock stealing from her food and shot him begining the Murdock-Huntley rivalry. Lucinda had gone to the Murdocks' to speak to Johnny James, but he was dead. She was there to confront him after so many years because that dead man had shot his own brother only because he loved Lucinda and Lucinda was a Huntley. In the end, Sammy and her friends solve the mystery of who burned down Mary's old pioneer cabin and Sammy ends up figuring out the riddle which leads to Mary's long lost treasure, old gold coins! ( )
  AcynthiaA | Feb 4, 2010 |
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This book is dedicated to my parents, Peter and Mieske Van Draanen, who had the courage to pioneer wide waters and foreign soil in search of a better life.

Also to my husband's great-great-grandfather, Lyman Lysander Huntley, whose journal of crossing the plains in 1850 is a historic treasure.

Grateful thanks to Nancy Siscoe for the fifteen pages of editorial wisdom, and to my husband, Mark Parsons for fifteen years of spirited adventuring.

Thanks, too, to the following for research consultation: Ann Parsons, forensic toxicologist; Eric Parsons, supervising criminalist; Ed Smith, fire cause consultant; Ilona Dobbe, All Seasons Nursery.

And finally, thanks to Jason Tamura and Jason Graham for the brainstorming sessions; to Nicholas May--I've still got your magazines; and to Mary-Mary Kuczkowski, Leslie Kuo, and Susan Cavaletoo for reviving my school-fried brain at powwow lunches in the Cave.
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You'd think I could spend the night at a friend's house without finding myself knee-deep in pig poop.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0440416434, Paperback)

Wendelin Van Draanen's funny, fast-paced girl-detective series hit the ground running with Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief, winner of the 1999 Edgar Allan Poe Award for best children's mystery. After four more Sammy stories, we've officially befriended the strong, spunky, skateboarding seventh grader who can't help but plant herself in the middle of the action. Sammy Keyes and the Curse of Moustache Mary starts innocently enough when Sammy decides to spend New Year's Eve weekend at a friend's house in the country. The next thing she knows, she's made friends with an elderly woman named Lucinda Huntley, owner of a 200-pound pet pig and heir to a Wild West story about a century-old family feud involving her great-grandmother "Moustache Mary," who came west from Missouri in 1845. When Mary's historic cabin burns to the ground, Sammy wastes no time in plunging headlong into the mystery--and into a few serious scrapes.

Sammy is growing up, and with her years come the rumblings of romance, confrontations with kids who use (and manufacture) drugs, and plenty of decisions about who she should trust... including herself. Van Draanen captures Sammy's honest, funny, fresh voice in an always-engaging first-person narrative that accompanies the rapid-fire action and adventure. Sammy Keyes is a person your favorite bookworm will want to get to know, and fortunately, more adventures are on the way. (Ages 10 and older) --Karin Snelson

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:32 -0400)

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While celebrating the New Year with a friend, Sammy encounters a mystery involving an elderly neighbor, a pioneer cabin, and a century-old family feud.

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