Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Shakespeare's Secret

by Elise Broach

Hero is the youngest daughter of two Shakespearean experts. Named after a character in "Much Ado About Nothing," Hero starts off the school year at a new school. As usual, her strange name is the object of ridicule for most of the students.

Eventually, Hero gets used to school, and she even makes some friends in and out of school. After her kindly neighbor shows her a precious diamond, Hero is suddenly caught up in a whirlwind of mystery and history. The diamond takes Hero, her neighbor, and one of the schoolboys into a highly debated topic even today: was William Shakespeare the real Shakespeare? In addition, they end up solving the mystery of the long lost diamond.

This book was quite interesting...even a little creepy. I wouldn't recommend reading it at night. However, I did learn a lot about history, such as previous queens of England and their reigns. The story reminded me of Chasing Vermeer by Blue Balliet--it had the same mysterious appeal. Definitely a great book to read on a rainy day.

Just something I noticed--does the cover art look similar to the art of The Series of Unfortunate Events? I don't think the artists are the same, but...doesn't the girl on the cover look kind of like Violet? Or maybe it's just me.


cuileann said...

The girl and the house do look fairly Violet-ish.

Does it bode ill for my children that I think Hero is a cool name?

Priya said...

Well, it depends on whether or not your children will like the name Hero...

In the story, when Hero introduced herself, one of the girls in her class said, "Hey, that's my dog's name." :)

Erin said...

Yes, the illustrator is the same - Brett Helquist.

And Holly - my pastor's daughter named one of her daughters Hero. :)

GirlwiththeBraids said...

This book sounds cool. I admit, I actually do like reading scary books at night. The Historian is one of them, even though I've never finished it. :)

I'll have to check it out!

(Oh, and the cover does look like Lemony Snicket's books. I guess it really is the same artist.)