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good clean well written detective fiction for 15 year old


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Showing 1-9 of 9 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Feb 16, 2012 5:44:17 PM PST
Hi all. I'm looking for suggestions for a really good "page-turner" detective novel for a high school girl. Some thing with a bit of literary heft to it but engaging and exciting. I'm not really familiar with the genre and need some help!

Posted on Feb 18, 2012 8:27:14 AM PST
Susan Solin says:
If you are looking for something with literary heft you might want to try The Woman in White. I've heard that this is considered the first mystery...or for a detective you might want to try Sherlock Holmes

Posted on Feb 18, 2012 8:53:50 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 18, 2012 8:58:38 AM PST
Amanda Peck says:
When I was a kid--eons ago--but the suggestions would still apply--my parents worried that I was reading too much JUNK. So I had to at least alternate "literature" with the mysteries that my mother loved and my father thought were, well, junk. I was somewhere between fifth and ninth grades at the time.

They did agree that Agatha Christie and Dorothy L. Sayers were good enough to qualify as "literature." One of the authors that I alternated them with was Rex Stout.

Barbara Michaels/Elizabeth Peters will probably fill the bill. Some--maybe not all--written under the name Barbara Michaels--do read as if they are written for teenagers, even if they can all be enjoyed by most of us.

Posted on Feb 18, 2012 9:01:21 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 18, 2012 9:03:52 AM PST
I would recommend Alan Bradley's Flavia de Luce books. Flavia is an 11 year old, extremely precocious, aspiring chemist living the 1950's English countryside with her mean sisters and a vague father - all of them missing their (presumed) dead mother. Flavia has a habit of discovering bodies here and there (nothing gory) and does her best to help out the local coppers. The books are written for adults, so not childish, just funny & sweet.

ETA: Not so much "literary heft" though - well-written, but light.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 18, 2012 9:46:13 AM PST
Amanda Peck says:
The Flavia de Luce books are lots of fun. Maybe especially if your teenager has enjoyed her science and chemistry classes.

More serious would be Mark Haddon's THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHTTIME. Our hero is an autistic (British) roughly junior high school boy.

Posted on Feb 18, 2012 9:58:07 AM PST
Amanda Peck says:
Chris Grabenstein's books set in coastal New Jersey with a young (mid twenties, but he acts younger) rookie and an older (and VERY upright) cop would certainly have been readable for me at that age. No graphic sex, IIRC no particular gore.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 18, 2012 8:19:03 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 18, 2012 8:41:13 PM PST
Cphe says:
Daughter of Time - Josephine Tey
The Daughter of Time

Posted on Feb 19, 2012 6:43:45 AM PST
Hands down, my recommendation is Rebecca by Daphne DuMaurier. It's a true classic in every sense of the word and I'm sure she'll love it.

Posted on Feb 19, 2012 8:48:12 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 19, 2012 8:54:56 AM PST
Agatha Christie is great and still fresh even 80 years later. How clean do you need it to be? No mention of sex or violence at all or just minimal? I second the recommendation of duMaurier and she has other books in the gothic tradition. Maybe try Jacqueline Winspear who has a series of historical mysteries set in the 20s and 30s?

Thanks to others as the Flavia books sound like fun and I am going to check them out.
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Discussion in:  Mystery forum
Participants:  7
Total posts:  9
Initial post:  Feb 16, 2012
Latest post:  Feb 19, 2012

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