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Walls Within Walls [Kindle Edition]

Maureen Sherry , Adam Stower
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $6.99
Kindle Price: $5.98
You Save: $1.01 (14%)
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.


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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:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #59,136 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A House of Puzzles! May 19, 2011
Format:Hardcover
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 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing book November 24, 2010
Format:Hardcover
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 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Solving a New York Puzzle! November 2, 2010
Format:Hardcover
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 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My Daughter Devoured This May 2, 2011
Format:Hardcover
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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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific Reading Aloud book! January 30, 2011
By Marisa
Format:Hardcover
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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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Walls Within Walls December 20, 2012
By Sheryl
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Walls Within Walls is an appealing mystery novel. You will need to find a comfortable place to begin reading this novel because chances are, you will become completely absorbed in the storyline, you will be compelled to finish it without putting it down!

This is a children's novel written for 3rd - 6th graders, but as an adult (and teacher) I found it captivating! Walls within Walls is on the Bluebonnet list for the 2013-2014 school year. I highly suggest you read this nail-bitting mystery.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect for a more advanced reader January 1, 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
My granddaughter is in 6th grade and this is just the type of book she loves to read. It is a great story and BIG.

The book itself was in like new condition. I gave this as part of her Christmas gift. She was excited to read it.

Shipping was very fast and I would buy from this dealer again.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars We loved this book January 22, 2011
By Mary
Format:Hardcover
I bought this book for my 10 year old daughter, and I couldn't put it down. We both loved it! Sherry kept us interested throughout the book, and she intrigued us with all the fantastic places in New York City that the characters explored. I highly recommend this book for all the kids in the family... and the adults too!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars One good book
Good quality book, well illustrated...
Published 7 days ago by Antonio Torres
2.0 out of 5 stars Boring
Good but I have seen better. I did not like how it did not stay focused on one character the whole time.
Published 18 days ago by Tina kardaras
4.0 out of 5 stars walls within walls within words
This is a great story, especially the history of Manhattan and poetry aspects. It could have been edited/trimmed a little more.
Published 23 days ago by Jeannie
5.0 out of 5 stars love
My 11 year old daughter loved reading the book.
Published 25 days ago by A. Rivera
5.0 out of 5 stars Mystery to go
I chose to give this book 5 stars because the book was so intriguing and I could never set this book down and finding out the mystery I mean it's so hard to find books this good!!! Read more
Published 1 month ago by Donna
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun for fans of NYC
This is a cute story that eventually takes the reader all over New York City, eagerly waiting for the Smithfork children to solve their mystery. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Amy Newsome
4.0 out of 5 stars Nice Puzzle
Kind of a fun mystery/puzzle novel. Great to fire up your children's imagination while learning about history at the same time.
Published 2 months ago by Lady Caroline
5.0 out of 5 stars My fifth grader recommended it to me!!!
This was originally an assigned book for my fifth grader. When she couldn't put it down I knew it was a winner. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Mary Hawn
4.0 out of 5 stars Pretty good
Overall the book was pretty good. It was informative in an interesting way. I would recommend it for kids and those who still love to learn.
Published 4 months ago by Shelli
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow, was this ever good.
I enjoyed this book very much. It was well written. The characters were interesting and the poetry was easy to read and enjoy. Read more
Published 4 months ago by elizabeth hoffman
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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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