HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: The Double Cousins and the Mystery of the Russian Jewels
Author: Miriam Jones Bradley
Cover Designer: Hannah Nichols
Publisher: Ambassador International, 2016
Language level: 1
(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing and/or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing and/or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)
Recommended reading level: Ages 9-12 (and up)
Rating: ***** 5 stars (EXCELLENT)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Bradley, Miriam Jones. The Double Cousins and the Mystery of the Russian Jewels (published in 2016 by Ambassador International, Emerald House, 411 University Ridge, Suite B14, Greenville, SC 29601). The Double Cousins are back with a double mystery! Carly and Molly Johnson, ten and nine years old, live with their parents in North Platte, NE. Their double cousins Max and Chad Rawson, ten and eight years old, who live in South Dakota, are spending spring break with the Johnsons because their parents and older sister Dorie are in Washington, DC, for the National Spelling Bee. Carly’s best friend and next door neighbor Kate Neilson, also ten years old, had lost her mother a few years before, and now her great-grandma, whom everyone called Pinky, has died.
Carly, Molly, Max, Chad, their Aunt Susie, two other cousins Brandon and Slim, Slim’s old friend Earl from his train jumping days, and Shelly, the cousin of Kate’s mother newly arrived from Chicago, IL, all volunteer to help Kate clean up Pinky’s apartment. Back in 1874, Pinky’s grandfather Simon had worked as a scout with Buffalo Bill Cody who gave Simon a wedding gift of a necklace of jewels and a couple of valuable coins all of which he had obtained from Grand Duke Alexis of Russia. But Pinky had hidden the jewels and no one but Shelly’s mom, who has dementia, knows where they are. While cleaning the apartment, the crew finds over $400 which was put in an envelope but then disappears.
Where is the necklace? Will Kate ever find it? Who took the money? And why? Wow! This is one exciting story. It is the fifth Double Cousins adventure coming from author Miriam Jones Bradley. Several flash-back scenes provide some historical insight into the North Platte, NE area. The attitudes and actions of the cousins reinforce wholesome values like honesty or hard work to children. And there are a few surprises that will keep even an adult reader turning the pages. The Double Cousins and the Mystery of the Russian Jewels is a super book.