Friday, September 18, 2009

The Mystery of the Third Lucretia


Have you ever been to an art museum and seen aspiring artists trying to copy their favorite paintings? That’s exactly what best friends Kari and Lucas (she’s a girl, yes) witness on their trip to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts except this guy is really good at it. He’s suspicious too, shooing people away from his secluded spot in the corner where he paints. A year later when the girls visit an art museum in London, the same mysterious man is working on the same painting … but while wearing a disguise. What is he trying to hide? Though Kari and Lucas are both ready to start the adventure, they aren‘t completely sure of what to do. When things become life-threatening, neither of them know if it’s worth the trouble.

The Mystery of the Third Lucretia was realistic while still being unbelievable. I felt my excitement rise with the characters’ as everything was starting to come together. There were times when I could just picture the girls and them saying “Omigosh, omigosh” as the mystery began to unfold. Though I didn’t realize it when reading, I learned a lot about art history and traveling. And it was amusing! In the beginning, the timeline was somewhat confusing so I can’t place all the Before events in order in my mind. That’s why I think this book would be great as a movie, so I can see all the scenes sorted out. The emotions the characters experience throughout the book is completely convincing and I applaud the author for her character-making skills. I look forward to the next books in this series!

The Mystery of the Third Lucretia by Susan Runholt
278 pages, published by Sleuth Puffin division of Penguin in 2008
Contains: mention of murders (not graphic), feminism, and made-up profanity

RECOMMENDED (for ages 12+)

STARS: 5 out of 5


  1. Sounds good! This is on my to-read list now.

  2. Thanks for the five stars! I get lots of fun reviews of my books and rarely comment, but one element of your fine review of Lucretia just yelled for my attention: In the product details below, you write, "Contains murder (not graphic), feminism and made-up profanity." It was the latter that made me laugh out loud in the privacy of my living room!

    I'd love to do an interview sometime if you're interested. Mind you, sometimes it takes me a few weeks to answer the questions because I'm over-the-top busy. But I do get to them eventually.

    Thanks again,

    Susan Runholt

  3. That's awesome, Priya! I think you'd really like it. :)

    I'm glad you got a laugh, Ms. Runholt! I just couldn't find the right words to describe it, though. I guess everyone will know what I'm talking about after they read the book! An interview would be great. First, I need to think of some worth-while questions. Then I'll send them right over through the contact box on your website. :)


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