This is a delightful chapter book for older elementary and middle schoolers. Bernice is a quirky, red-headed wanna be writer and police detective. She lives in a small town located on a coastal shore complete with boat piers and lots of ships. The local police are used to her “help”. She and her best friend are obsessed (as all young girls are), with the local movie star, Crystal Bell. The two of them know all things “Crystal”. Bernice has even formed a relationship with Bell’s bodyguard/chauffeur who has caught her sneaking around the Bell mansion.
Bernice finds herself having to go it alone when her bestie comes down with Chickenpox. Continuing on in her adventures of sleuthing, she makes notes of all she sees and hears, even the flashes of light coming from a nearby uninhabited island. While studying these flashes and trying to get closer to them she meets a peg-leg sea captain whose boat is docked at the pier. Now Bernice is the type of person that gives 100% so she decides to see what it is like to be peg-legged and ties her leg back and learns to walk on a plunger. When one has this kind of dedication very little will stop the person from success.
Harth has written a fun adventure story that will tickle the funny bones, provide a little tension, and some good old fashioned scares. Her characters will become like friends to the readers and you won’t want to wait for another adventure. This is a more modern tale along the lines of Pippy Longstocking.