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The Beast of Blackslope (The Sherlock Files) Paperback – March 15, 2011


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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 4- 6 Xena and Xander Holmes, vacationing in the English village of Blackslope, find themselves in the middle of a unsolved mystery in this installment (Clarion, 2010) in the series by Tracy Barrett. The brother and sister are great-great-great grandchildren of the famous Sherlock Holmes and have the detective's cold case notebook. Residents claim to see and hear a beast-like creature during the night, just like they did a hundred years ago. Are the two cases related? The suspects are plentiful because of the potential profit involved. The local bookstore owner wrote a book about the beast that has not sold well and their playmate, Trevor, is trying to earn money for a trip to Australia. Xena and Xander unwittingly stumble upon the perpetrators while following one of their suspects. However, they are still left scratching their heads about Sherlock's case. American and British accents are used by narrator Joseph Allen Nelson, but the reading is a bit flat. Some sound effects could have boosted the level of suspense. The plot is similar to a Scooby Doo mystery, but does not have the same characterization. Nonetheless, children will find this an enjoyable listen. Lori A. Guenthner, Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, Baltimore, MD (c) Copyright 2010.  Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

From Booklist

This second entry in the Sherlock Files, which has Xander and Xena Holmes in possession of their ancestor Sherlock’s cold-case files, riffs a bit on The Hound of the Baskervilles, though maybe less than one would think. The brother and sister find themselves in the country village of Blackslope, where 100 years ago Sherlock failed to get to the bottom of the rumors surrounding a monstrous beast in the woods, a creature that seems to have reappeared. A few mild thrills, solid detective work, and a zippy pace make this a nice choice, and it may just lead kids to Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock. Grades 4-6. --Ian Chipman --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 630L (What's this?)
  • Series: The Sherlock Files (Book 2)
  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Square Fish (March 15, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312659180
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312659189
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.6 x 7.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #93,536 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I was born in Cleveland, Ohio, and grew up mostly in New York state. I went to college in New England and graduate school in California.

The first book I ever read by myself was called Little Bobo and His Blue Jacket. I still have it. I learned to read when I was three, but I know now that this doesn't mean much. My brother didn't really read until he was seven, and now he reads more and remembers it better than I do.

I have a husband, two grown children, and two crazy Jack Russell terriers.

I teach Italian and other subjects at Vanderbilt University, but I've handed in my resignation and plan to retire in May, 2012, to write full time. I love doing school visits and hope that when my schedule doesn't mean that I'm working while kids are in school, I'll be able to do more of them.

I like to travel, especially to Italy, and especially with my family. I used to skydive (that's how I met my husband, but on the ground, not in the air!) but I haven't jumped out of an airplane in a long time.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Genetta Adair on October 16, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This fun and fast-paced detective novel (sequel to THE 100-YEAR-OLD SECRET) will please young mystery lovers. While living in England, American twins Xena and Xander stumble upon another 100-year-old mystery that their famous ancestor Sherlock Holmes couldn't solve. During their family vacation in the quiet village of Blackslope, a horrible creature terrifies the town, and Xena and Xander jump into their detective roles. Author Tracy Barrett entwines snippets from the Sherlock Holmes stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle along with traditional English expressions, customs, and foods.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Esther LINDSEY on March 11, 2014
Format: Paperback
I am 11-years old. I think this book is good for anyone who likes adventure or mysteries. If you would choose a book, I would choose this one. This is about two kids who are related to Sherlock Holmes and their names are Xander and Xena and in this book they try to uncover why everybody in the town won't go out at night. It kept me in suspense until the very end. Anyone my age who loves books and mysteries, will love this series. - Rebekah L. age, 11
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Gunit69 on February 8, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
My students love this series of books. Great storyline and fun adventures. Don't ask me to write a review and give me a requirement of a number of words.. There now its long enough.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By hsmathmom on June 3, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I am a 12 year old reader. I really like this book. I really like mysteries so this book was a good choice.
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A Kid's Review on June 10, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Once I started reading I couldn't put it down. I told my mom that it felt like I was in the story and I had butterflies in my stomach. My mom was so happy that I found a book that I really liked -- BK

I am so thrilled that we finally found a series that my daughter loves. As a book lover myself, I can jump into any book and like it. However, it has been verry difficult to find books that my kids like. I have to say that my daughter is 9 and this IS the first book that she begged to read to us. Thank you, Thank-you! There is hope that she will be passionate about books! We are now looking for more to read!
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Format: Paperback
A great mystery for the amateur detectives Xena and Xander Holmes, descendants of the Great Sleuth himself. A beast has returned after decades of an absence, and is bent on terrorizing the town of Blackslope at night. Armed with Sherlock Holmes' notebook of clues he had collected on the beast years ago, this brother and sister duo aim to find out the source of the terrifying creature.

It's a fun read, and I looking forward to checking out the other books in the series.
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By S. Wood on November 3, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is my nine year old daughter's review of this book.
It left me hanging. Every single time I stopped, I just wanted to pick it up again. That's why you should read this book
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