Saturday, May 18, 2024

The Neighbors' Secret by Diana Sussman

 


Maddie and her best friend Rachel are 8th graders. Maddie always sees mysteries to solve and Rachel sees boys to chase. In spite of their differences, they make a great team (when Rachel isn't bringing up Maddie's past sluething failures). At least they used to. Now Rachel's interest in boys seems out of control: more make-up, flirting and incessantly talking about boys. While Maddie is trying to figure out Rachel, she meets Chloe, a new girl at school and wants to include her. Rachel on the other hand, seems intent on cutting remarks and snarky humor. 

Then when new neighbors move in the neighborhood, Maddie and Rachel start competing for the attention of the new boy, Alex. Complicating matters is the fact that Maddie thinks his parents are spies. So she's torn between her interest in him and her suspicions that his parents are not who they claim to be. While she's spying on her new neighbors, Maddie is also learning how to hold her own against mean girls and a sexist teacher.  

Are the neighbors really spies?  Will Maddie and Rachel's friendship survive? Is Alex interested in either one or just acting a part?  Readers will want to find out those answers!

Woven within the story are some tidbits on history (Maddie is working on a report about a spy in the American Revolution).  The cover artwork suggests an upper elementary, early middle grade book but I would place the content closer to YA as there are references to parties with drinking, hooking up, and more high school related interactions. Rachel and Maddie skip school and then forge notes for the school. I would caution parents to preview first. I found it to be a little edgy for my taste. Would suggest for audiences age 14+.

Disclaimer: I received a free digital copy of The Neighbors' Secret from NetGalley for the purpose of review. No other compensation was received and the opinions expressed are my own.



No comments:

The Neighbors' Secret by Diana Sussman

  Maddie and her best friend Rachel are 8th graders. Maddie always sees mysteries to solve and Rachel sees boys to chase. In spite of their ...