Wednesday, 17 September 2014
Review: Violet and the Pearl of the Orient by Harriet Whitehorn
Publisher: Simon and Schuster Children's
Format: Hardcover / eBook
Released: August 28th, 2014
Meet Violet Remy-Robinson, an amateur Sherlock Holmes in the making...When a new family move in next door, Violet is sure there's something strange about them. Then her eccentric, but lovely neighbour, Dee Dee Derota, has a precious jewel stolen. Could the new family be to blame? Violet is on the case to uncover the truth...
I'd been looking forward to Violet and the Pearl of the Orient for months before a copy arrived at my house. I excitedly read it that very same morning and of course loved everything about it, from the cover to the characters to the illustrations. It's a fantastic book for any age, though 7+ readers in particular will find a certain magic within its pages.
Violet ends up being a mini Sherlock Holmes by the end of this story, a story that starts with the Du Plicitous family moving next door, a precious jewel going missing and a selection of clues that keeps Violet on her tippy toes. Her detective skills make themselves known quite early on - as soon as her neighbour friend Dee Dee Derota's pearl jewel is nowhere to be found - and the way she puts the mystery together is not only incredibly brave (yay, Violet!) but also clever too. Sherlock better watch out, 'cos Violet's about!
I really loved the quirky characters in this book, especially Violet, Dee Dee, the Du Plicitous family and Norma the housekeeper. They're all memorable in their own right, and it's great to be able to see them through purple and black illustrations. Becka Moor does an excellent job of bringing the characters and settings to life; she and Harriet Whitehorn are a match made in children's fiction heaven!
Violet and the Pearl of the Orient was definitely worth the wait and I'm eagerly looking forward to more adventures with Violet and her super sleuthing skills. If I had to pick just one fond memory from this book, it's the image of Dee Dee's cat wearing a face mask that looks like strawberry jelly. I defy you not to laugh at that!