Publisher: Untreed Reads Publishing (September 19, 2012)
Rating: ★★★★When twelve-year-old Jesse Hanson and her best friend Tina overhear a robbery being plotted, transmitted from another location over her brother’s baby monitor, they set out to investigate. Caught off guard by the conversation they heard between a woman with a foreign accent and a male, they deduce it must have taken place in the vicinity of another baby monitor.
The next day Jesse’s mother hosts Tina’s mother’s baby shower at the Hanson house. Having been informed that small children will be attending, the two friends take the opportunity to start ingratiating themselves among mothers and their offspring. There’s only a week before the robbery is to take place, but after several days of searching the woman with the accent remains a mystery. Jesse decides it’s time to tell her mother and get the authorities involved.
Strangers in the Lane by Virginia Rose Richter is the second installment of the new mystery novella series aimed at pre-teens. The character of amateur detective Jesse Hanson shows her maturity by realizing she’s encountered a dangerous situation that she and Tina can’t possibly handle alone. The addition of Bryce Peterson, a new boy in the neighborhood that Jesse develops a crush on, adds an interesting dynamic to this story.
About the AuthorVirginia Rose Richter grew up in central Nebraska. She attended the University of Colorado and received an MA degree from the University of Denver and a BA in music from Metropolitan State College of Denver. She practiced as a clinical audiologist in Denver while raising four children. In the fall of 2010, Ms. Richter was a winner in a local mystery writing contest. She has written three Middle School mysteries in a series set in Nebraska and featuring two young amateur detectives. The first in the series, "THE SECRET OF WILLOW LANE," was used in a 'Read Along' project in a sixth grade class in Littleton, Colorado. She was told that the teacher tried to limit the reading to a chapter a day but was often persuaded by the students to add another chapter. When the suspense was becoming intense, the students were allowed to turn off the lights and follow along on the lighted classroom screen.