Saturday, January 24, 2015

Brains Benton #2 Counterfeit Coin and #3 Stolen Dummy

In Brains Benton #2, The Case of the Counterfeit Coin, Jimmy finds a foreign coin in his change from his newspaper customers.  Jimmy excitedly calls Brains to tell him, and while Jimmy is on the phone in the drugstore, someone tries to steal the coin!  The boys launch an investigation and discover that the coin is a counterfeit of an ancient Greek coin.

On page 33, the boys leave quickly because they are afraid that the Bentons' housekeeper, Mrs. Ray, has an errand for them.  This reminded me of all the times the Three Investigators stay away from Aunt Mathilda so that she doesn't put them to work.

I enjoyed this book.

In Brains Benton #3, The Case of the Stolen Dummy, Brains and Jimmy find a submerged vehicle in a pond.  An old dummy is hanging out of the vehicle.  The dummy once belonged to Will Parslow.  Meanwhile, someone stole $5,000 from a real estate agent's office, and Will Parslow was seen in the office that night.  Parslow is accused of the theft based on circumstantial evidence, but Brains is certain that Parslow is innocent.  The boys set out to prove it. 

On page 18, Jimmy's narration informs the reader about a recent fundraiser.  The reader is then told that Jimmy "is telling you all this for a very good reason, as you'll find out later."  It's refreshing for a series book to outright inform the reader that certain information is important.  I already knew that it was before Jimmy's statement, because every time seemingly random information is told to a reader in a series book, the information always plays a role in a later part of the story.

On page 71, Jimmy learns that Mr. Gault and his wife were murdered with a hatchet.  Ouch.  That's a bit gruesome for a series book.

In this book, a bitter old woman causes trouble.  We can all relate to that, because we've all had to deal with such people.  I live right next to some of them.

On page 105, Brains and Jimmy go looking for an obscure book for Mr. Benton.  The book is The Canaanite Period of Syrian History.  They find the book in the first store they check in a nearby town.  Right.  Just like if I go looking for an obscure series book, I will find it in the first store I check.  I wish.

On page 132, Jimmy reacts with horror to the news that a certain man is a convict, guilty of grand larceny.  He is scared to death to be around the man.  This particular man is scary, but I thought it was a bit ridiculous to be terrified of someone who was convicted of theft.

I thought this book was a pretty good mystery.  I guessed who was likely involved fairly early in the story, but the clues were not that obvious.  I also had a suspicion as to why that person was guilty, but the pieces didn't fully fall into place until near the end of the story.  This is an an engaging book.

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