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The Secret of Dinswood by Ellen Alexander
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The Secret of Dinswood

by Ellen Alexander

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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I was given a free digital copy of this book from Library Thing in exchange for a review.

I thought this book was fun and suspenseful. There were a few parts that dragged a little bit for me, but I'm guessing the intended audience is more YA. I would have absolutely loved this book as a teenager. As an adult I have a lot more reading experience, so I'm used to a different pace.

This book reminded me a little bit of Harry Potter only because of the setting. It's set in a school in a remote area, like Hogwarts. And the kids in this book are probably about the age Harry and the gang were when they started school. This book doesn't have any "magical" elements though -- it's pretty much grounded in reality (although some of it is a little hard to believe).

I think young adults that like mysteries would probably love this book, and it's very much PG-rated. Who wouldn't want to go to boarding school in a mysterious castle? I know I would! ( )
  JoeGoldberg | Oct 28, 2018 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Emma's mother died when she was small. Her stepmother is nice but her children take priority in her life. And it seems like Emma's father is more interested in them, too. So she's happy when she wins a scholarship and can go away to school.

BHC Press and Library Thing shared a copy of this book with me for review (thank you). It will be published February 26th.

Emma enjoys most of her classes, makes new friends and likes the routine of school. She's boarding there so she's left her family problems at home. She's even got a new guy that she likes and wouldn't mind having for a boyfriend. All is going well. But things change.

The school is having problems with financing. It may have to shut down because there is not enough money to stay open. There's a rumor of a treasure belonging to a pirate in the past and the group of four decides to try to find it. They don't have any luck and the clues are riddles. Are they not getting the right answers to the riddles? Is there really a treasure?

They do a dance for the students and her fella dances with everyone but her. She gets mad at him and he's embarrassed by what he's done. They end up not speaking to each other. Then he finds out the school is going to shut down at the end of term. Now they all have to start the treasure hunt again and they need to find it for the school. What they don't know is that they are not the only ones looking...

This is a great book for middle graders and adults both. I enjoyed this read and bet you will, too. ( )
  bkfaerie | Oct 19, 2018 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
The Secret of Dinswood is an up-and-coming children’s/young adult series. In this book, seventh grader Emma beats a scholarship to attend Dinswood academy ( think Hogwarts sans magic). There, she meets severla friends, and together they discover the true history of their boarding school.

I found the plot and characters engaging. There are times, however, when the writing could be tightened up. ( )
  06nwingert | Oct 11, 2018 |
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