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Walls Within Walls [Kindle Edition]

Maureen Sherry , Adam Stower
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $6.99
Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
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Book Description

After their father, a video-game inventor, strikes it rich, the Smithfork kids find they hate their new life. They move from their cozy Brooklyn neighborhood to a swanky apartment on Manhattan's Fifth Avenue. They have no friends, a nanny who takes the place of their parents, and a school year looming ahead that promises to be miserable.

And then, one day, Brid, CJ, and Patrick discover an astonishing secret about their apartment: The original owner, the deceased multimillionaire Mr. Post, long ago turned the apartment itself into a giant puzzle containing a mysterious book and hidden panels—a puzzle that, with some luck, courage, and brainpower, will lead to discovering the Post family fortune. Unraveling the mystery causes them to race through today's New York City—and to uncover some long-hidden secrets of the past.

Maureen Sherry's page-turning debut novel is filled with adventure, intrigue, and heart.

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 5-8–Twelve-year-old CJ, his nine-year-old sister Brid, and six-year-old Patrick Smithfork resent leaving Brooklyn for Manhattan, even though they are pleased that their dad's video-game company has struck it rich. Finding a wall, a painting, and a book behind a grille in their historical Fifth Avenue apartment, the children start to decipher clues that send them on an architectural treasure hunt. Their neighbor Eloise Post hopes that the hunt will reveal the whereabouts of her father's lost fortune from the 1930s. The man left a book of poems by Langston Hughes, Edna St. Vincent Millay, and others that lead to seven famous structures around the city. This debut novel is a breathtaking romp, focusing on the work of little-known master tile mason and architect Rafael Guastavino. Sherry's passion will make readers fall in love with New York and the poems that portray its many personalities. Full-page illustrations appear throughout. There is a majesty to the author's juxtaposition of monument and poem, although this grandeur masks some of the book's irregularities. The third-person perspective shifts in a way that distances readers from the main characters and impedes character development. Secondary figures are sometimes sketched lightly, although the implied sequel may develop them more fully. Similar to “The 39 Clues” (Scholastic) books or Michael D. Beil's “The Red Blazer Girls” (Knopf), this story incorporates many subplots but lacks a tidy narrative. Nevertheless, readers will relish being tourists on this treasure hunt, no matter what. Pick it up and watch for the sequel.Caitlin Augusta, Stratford Library Association, CT
© Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

The Smithfork children, at least the older ones, CJ, Brid, and Patrick—12, 9, and 6, respectively—are unhappy about leaving Brooklyn for Manhattan. Their father’s video-game business is so lucrative that they’re moving to a fabulous Fifth Avenue apartment once owned by the Post family. The kids are as depressed as they are unimpressed, until they notice something unusual about the place. Turns out the apartment is a giant puzzle filled with codes, clues, and carvings that seem to point toward a secret fortune. But finding it and figuring out who it belongs to takes skill, stamina, and the ability to conduct searches across the city without tipping their hand. This can be dense, but like Blue Balliett’s Chasing Vermeer (2004), it packs all sorts of interesting information about topics like history and architecture into a mystery that kids can (almost) solve. Although the way the children run around Manhattan may raise some eyebrows, readers will get a real feel for the uniqueness that is New York City. Grades 4-7. --Ilene Cooper

Product Details

  • File Size: 1300 KB
  • Print Length: 372 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 006176700X
  • Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books; Reprint edition (September 14, 2010)
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003VIWNW6
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #274,402 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A House of Puzzles! May 19, 2011
Do you want to read a book that draws you into another world? If you like to read books that absorb you completely, read Walls Within Walls by Maureen Sherry. When Brid, CJ, and Patrick move with their family from Brooklyn to 5th avenue--Manhattan--they don't know what to do. Dad is always away on business for his new multi-million dollar company and Mom is busy decorating the new house. When Brid accidentally looks behind a broken metal grille, she finds a large, mysterious eye, painted on a hidden wall. The three siblings become entangled with the mystery of the fortune of Mr. Post. Mr. Post was a multi-millionaire and had made a puzzle, that if solved, would lead to his fortune. The siblings discover a code encrypted on the painted eye. This is the first piece of Mr. Post's puzzle. It is crucial for the children to work together and cooperate with their friends, to solve the puzzle. They soon discover that a sinister man--who intrudes into their house--is looking for the fortune too.
This book teems with the mystery and excitement, which every book should have. Walls within Walls is written with detail and care, as you will appreciate during the children's trek into the large and dangerous city of New York. While getting trapped in dark-flooded subways, followed by treasure hunters, and escaping dangerous areas, the children make friends with many different people. The artwork is magnificent and meticulous as is the book. I think there needs to be more of an introduction to the characters and their family. Otherwise the book is packed with excitement, action and adventure as Patrick, CJ and Brid find themselves in an exciting mystery in the Big Apple.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing book November 24, 2010
Walls Within Walls is a fantastic book. It is very well written and I throughly enjoyed it. The plot and characters are very good. Maureen Sherry creativily weaves together bits and pieces to form the main mystery. THe plot has a web of many clues which make it even more enjoyable. I really recommend Walls Within Walls to anyone who loves a great story!
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Solving a New York Puzzle! November 2, 2010
A great story including New York history, famous figures and families, and the magic of siblings solving a mystery together. This is a wonderful tale of children meeting the many challenges of a move and quickly discovering that their new home has a special story of its own. I especially loved the underlying notion of a home having a unique history of the families who have lived and loved there, and how this is continued each time a new family moves in. Can't wait for the Smithforks' next mystery!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My Daughter Devoured This May 2, 2011
I've been trying to get my daughter, 4th grade, to move on to something besides re-reading Harry Potter. She loves mysteries and adventures, and this book was the biggest hit since the Percy Jackson series. She stayed up late on a Sunday night after finishing, reading all the extras at the end aloud to me and highly recommends the book to me! We are both looking forward to the next title by this author.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love this book! January 31, 2011
We read this book in my 10 year old daughter's book club. It is a fast paced novel with fantastic puzzles, mysteries and history lessons about New York City. Everyone loved the book and it lent itself to a rich discussion. I highly recommend the book and can not wait for Sherry's next book!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow! Great Cryptic Mystery. September 24, 2010
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Enjoyed how this mystery unfolded. I could envision all the different locations in NY without having been there. Excellent debut novel.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
My daughter (age 9) is reading this for school and we have been reading it together at night. Let's just say she has been up WAY past her bedtime because we cannot wait to see what will happen next, what the next clue will be, or where they head off to explore in the next chapter. It is fun, creative, sweet and suspenseful, plus the characters are wonderful, kind and well-developed. Terrific book for 4th grade and up.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific Reading Aloud book! January 30, 2011
By Marisa
I am reading this aloud to my 11-yr-old daughter. At this age, it's really hard to keep her interesting in reading aloud (she'd rather run off and reread the Harry Potter series on her own), and Walls within Walls is proving terrific. We live in Manhattan, so that makes it particularly interesting for us, but it's really the on-going mystery story that's working so well. Fabulous book!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars #wallswithinwallsrocks
I love this book so much that I gave 5 stars!!I recommend this book to anyone who loves mystery and suspense! This is my favorite book for 2015! Read more
Published 1 month ago by CEDRIC D. SCOTT
4.0 out of 5 stars Can't stop reading!
This book was one you kept trying to figure out! Loved the codes and the poetry involved! Makes you want to visit New York to see the sites mentioned in the book, especially... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Carol
5.0 out of 5 stars Happy with Purchase
Great book...especially if you are visiting or have visited New York City. Book was in fabulous condition and arrived when they promised.
Published 2 months ago by Wayne Hilk
5.0 out of 5 stars An Entertaining Read
Mystery and history in an enjoyable story. My fifth granddaughter picked out the book and it was fun reading it and guessing what would happen next and to try out our solutions to... Read more
Published 4 months ago by ReaderBill
5.0 out of 5 stars ... got faster and at the end it was really good I advise you read
It had a slow beginning but it got faster and at the end it was really good I advise you read it
Published 4 months ago by Djstevie C.
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best I've ever read!
As a parent, I like to read books before my son does so that we can discuss them together in detail. That said, even without that purpose in mind, this was well worth my time! Read more
Published 4 months ago by spellchecker
5.0 out of 5 stars A fun mystery!
When CJ, Brid, Patrick, and their baby sister move to 5th Avenue from Brooklyn their lives change dramatically. Read more
Published 5 months ago by The DMS
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
it's a great book. once I started it I couldn't put it down.
Published 5 months ago by Sweetiewheaty
5.0 out of 5 stars a great book
I read this book as I was going to NYC for 3 days with family. I love mystery in a book and am so happy my mom suggested it to my.
Published 7 months ago by Melissa V. Pitinii
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
A good story over all. A little hard to follow the clues, but well written and entertaining.
Published 7 months ago by jchag
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More About the Author

Recently added to the 2010 American Booksellers Association list of Best New Voices, Maureen Sherry was born in New York City and raised in Rockland County, New York. She graduated from both Cornell and Columbia Universities and went on to work on Wall Street, retiring as a managing director after twelve years. She used her extra time to ply her four young children with fantastic stories on a more regular basis and became adept at all things action-figured, sugary, mysterious and pink.

When moving homes brought feelings of melancholy with it, Maureen left behind clues to tell the next family about their time within those beloved walls. Riffing on this, her family had other clues embedded in their new home, clues that will eventually lead a future homeowner to a good story. This idea of the walls of a home being a living, breathing thing is the basis of this action adventure through the nooks of New York City.

Currently Maureen volunteers in public after-school programs both in Harlem and Brooklyn and is grateful for the lively, hopeful voices she gets to listen to on a regular basis.

She can often be found standing on her hands.

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