Enola Holmes Mysteries by Nancy Springer – Series Stars

enola-holmesLynn: It’s not every fourteen-year-old girl who can successfully work as a Perditorian (finder of lost things) on her own in the teeming dangerous streets of London. Enola Holmes is no ordinary girl and she is doing quite nicely, thank you, solving cases that baffle even her famous brothers. Before she disappeared, Enola’s eccentric mother told her, “Enola, you will do quite well on your own.” Using a dizzying variety of disguises, Enola solves mysteries and eludes her brothers who wish to send her off to a boarding school where she can be prepared for a woman’s proper place in society. Independent Enola who equals her brothers in intellect has other ideas, failing so far only in solving the case of her mother’s whereabouts.

Enola is a delight! Springer’s obvious fondness for Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s wonderful stories shines through these intriguing mysteries. Enola’s spot-on syntax and fascinating historical details make these books a pleasure from beginning to end. I pounce happily on each new book, delighting as much in watching Enola’s character blossom as in each intriguing new puzzle. In the fifth and latest book, The Case of the Cryptic Crinoline (Penguin, May 2009), Enola comes home to discover that her dear old landlady, Mrs. Tupper has been kidnapped! Egad! The Crimean War and Florence Nightingale add to the mystery as Enola is once more on the case. This Series Star shines especially bright.

Cindy: Sometimes I wonder where I’ve been! I read hundreds of youth books a year and somehow never picked up one of these, even though I’m a fan of Springer and booktalk mysteries for our 7th grade curriculum every year. I have promoted them, badly, but that will improve now that I’ve read the first one and can highlight the elements that my students will like. I listened to this one on audio with a fabulous reader, but that kept me from puzzling out the ciphers on my own, so the next volume I’ll read in print as I continue to follow this great heroine on her next adventure. I love discovering series once they are established because then I can leap to the next installment without having to wait for slow authors and publishers to deliver the goods. ūüėČ

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About the Author:

Cindy Dobrez and Lynn Rutan are Booklist reviewers and middle-school librarians who have chaired both ALA’s Best Books for Young Adults and the Michael L. Printz Award for YA Literature committees. Follow Bookends on Twitter at @BookendsBlog. You can also find Cindy at @cdobrez and Lynn at @482april.

2 Comments on "Enola Holmes Mysteries by Nancy Springer – Series Stars"

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  1. laurieab@gmail.com' LaurieA-B says:

    “I love discovering series once they are established because then I can leap to the next installment without having to wait for slow authors and publishers to deliver the goods.”
    Isn’t that great? I’ve always been grateful that I didn’t read either Sabriel by Garth Nix or The Ruby in the Smoke by Philip Pullman until the entire trilogy of each had been published. It’s possible the suspense would have killed me. During the furor of waiting for Harry Potter 7, it amused me to think of all the many children in years to come who would take for granted being able to read the entire series, straight through, for the first time, as I had with Narnia and the Dark is Rising series.

  2. shaunarum@gmail.com' Shauna says:

    I just discovered this series last week and love it!

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