You’ve Got Blackmail
Putnam, Apr 2009, $16.99
Fourteen years old Lauren “Lozzie” Cracknell cannot believe how much trouble she is in. Her older sister Karen is outraged for her borrowing her green nail polish and a few other items. Her parents have separated with her mom apparently dating her boorish English teacher Mr. Hilary Barnett. Lozzie may be killed by her mother or by the school bully two ton truck Tonya. The former will be irate as Lozzie forgot to mail the invitations to her mom’s customers at the A Cut Above salon; the latter is disturbed over an email sent to all their classmates that combines Tonya’s face with a donkey’s body.
Lozzie survives Karen’s tirade and with the help of her best friend Dex gets the letters delivered. Tonya with her freaky super tall spy Fran the giraffe lurking and their gang ready to execute Lozzie remains a threat. At her mom’s salon, Lozzie and Dex find a note addressed to Hilary blackmailing him. Even more stunning is Mr. Bore has authored a novel The Haunting of the Black-Eyed Girl. The teen duo brainstorms and draws conclusions as to who is behind the extortion threat and why; not realizing the danger of investigating the demand for ten thousand pounds.
The stressed to the max Lozzie and her sleuthing buddy Dex makes a fun young teen amateur sleuth duo as they use Holmes logic to solve the blackmail of the boring schoolteacher. The story line is fast-paced and humorous as Lozzie lands in one predicament after another, but with help from her friends and dad survives the ordeals only to land in the next mess. Fans will enjoy this young adult whodunit.