52471414. sx318 Premeditated Myrtle by Elizabeth C. Bunce, Bethan Rose Young (Narrator)

Published October 6th 2020 by Algonquin Young Readers, (RB Media) Recorded Books

5 Stars: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Premeditated Myrtle is the first book in a new mystery book series for MG that takes you back to the Victorian Time. There have been several series for younger readers lately introducing young sleuths and this is one that I hope continues as Myrtle Hardcastle is a great character. Her father is a Court Prosecutor, and she follows her father’s cases closely. Her mother had been trained as a doctor, but is deceased. She loves to read Police reports, and studies toxicology as well as crime scene analysis. She is very observant and notices even small things as well as having a wonderful power of deduction. Her problem is that she is a “Proper Lady”. How is she supposed to adhere to the Rules of Etiquette and have the freedom to run around town solving crimes? Luckily for her, she has the help of her governess, Miss Judson. She is also fortunate that so many people seem to trust and believe in her skills.

The mystery is centered around the murder of her next-door-neighbor, an elderly woman obsessed with flowers. It is deemed a heart attack, but Myrtle knows there is more to her death of this seemingly healthy woman. There are a few suspects, some red herrings, not-so-helpful police, and a false confession. I have to say I loved the neighbour’s cat, who knew everything, but only communicate with Myrtle via meows. The character development in this book was wonderful. I feel that I am getting to know these characters well. The final reveal and showdown was exceptional and had me on the edge of my seat. Overall, a well-developed mystery, with great characters and plot. This is geared to MG readers but I enjoyed it as an adult and recommend this as a great shared read between parents/grandparents and their children.

I listened to the audiobook narrated by Bethan Rose Young. She does a wonderful job with the voices and expression. Her accents were right on and her younger voice was perfect for Myrtle. I was gifted a copy of this book upon request. The rating and opinions shared are my own.

Description: Twelve-year-old Myrtle Hardcastle has a passion for justice and a Highly Unconventional obsession with criminal science. Armed with her father’s law books and her mum’s microscope, Myrtle studies toxicology, keeps abreast of the latest developments in crime scene analysis, and Observes her neighbors in the quiet village of Swinburne, England.

When her next-door neighbor, a wealthy spinster and eccentric breeder of rare flowers, dies under Mysterious Circumstances, Myrtle seizes her chance. With her unflappable governess, Miss Ada Judson, by her side, Myrtle takes it upon herself to prove Miss Wodehouse was murdered and find the killer, even if nobody else believes her — not even her father, the town prosecutor.

‘PREMEDITATED MYRTLE’, the first in a series that introduces a young investigator ready to take on hard cases and maddening Victorian rules for Young Ladies of Quality in order to earn her place among the most daring and acclaimed amateur detectives of her time or any other.