Attention fans of Nancy Drew, Becky Bling and other young lady detectives: there’s a super sleuth you need to meet: Samantha Robinson!
Samantha Robinson has questionable fashion sense, a quirky sense of humor, and keen observational skills. Her nosiness and passion for murder novels has her believing there’s always a mystery to be solved. Much to her frustration, her parents’ new money has made Samantha a shoe-in as a debutante, even though it’s the last thing Samantha would ever want to be. She doesn’t want to spend any more time with the catty rich girls who have made her life miserable since junior high. But just when she is going to tell her family that there’s no way she’ll be a deb, the head of the debutante world is murdered. As a debutante-elect and relative outsider, the police department’s lead investigator encourages Sam to become a part of the very society that has ostracized her for her entire life.
In her new role as a secret agent during the summer between high school and college, Sam finds that she actually grows to like parts of the society on which she’s supposed to be spying. But her investigation causes mayhem in her personal life. Will she be able to solve the murder, pull her family back together, adjust to her new position as a member of high-society, evade a killer, and get the right guy?This is a great book. In an age of racy romances and dystopian sagas, The Debutante Detective is an extremely refreshing old school (yet very original) who-done-it.
Sam is a reluctant heroine; she is asked by local law enforcement to use her tremendous observation skills to assist in their investigation. The crime took place within the inner circle of society’s elite, and she vows to help the police while navigating her way through Debutante Season. In most areas of her life, Sam is out of her element: “new money” in a blue blood community, “amateur detective” in a shocking murder mystery, and “late bloomer” in the ways of love as she comes of age the summer before college orientation.
In addition to making new friends in the Deb World, Sam juggles relationships with her world-traveling parents, collegiate brother and lifelong BFF, Nate. Just as Sam grows over the course of the summer, those she loves also go through changes. She must learn to trust new friends while forgiving old ones and blend in to society while remaining true to herself. Juggling these personal dynamics is just as challenging as solving the murder.
I enjoyed walking through these new experiences with Sam. I learned about the debutante culture as she attended classes and parties. I reminisced about young love as she stammered though conversations and awkwardly interacted with the popular boys. I especially loved trying to figure out (along with Sam) which of the suspects was the killer!
This is a fast paced, well written, entertaining story. It is good for teens to adults who enjoy a good mystery. This is a stand alone novel, but there are hints late in the book about a second investigation for Sam… I just purchased The Debutante Detective: Murder in Beverly Hills (for only $.99!!) and look forward to reading it asap.
*I received a copy of The Debutante Detective in exchange for an honest review. Many thanks to Lisa for making that copy an autographed paperback!! WOOT!!