The Many Mysteries of the Finkel Family

Dial. Mar. 2021. 288p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780593112298.
Gr 3-7–Twelve-year-old Lara Finkel’s determination to become as successful a detective as her literary heroine, Georgia Ketteridge, leads her to create her own agency, FIASCCO (Finkel Investigative Agency Solving Consequential Crimes Only). Lara isn’t prepared when the only mysteries she finds are strange behaviors in her own family, and her spying leads to her uncovering secrets she would rather not know. Her discoveries include the dismaying news that her father has lost his job, her brothers are both hiding things from their parents, her annoyingly perfect cousin is having difficulties, and her sister, Caroline, who is her best friend, has replaced her with a boy at school who is a very bad influence. In a family where her father has attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder and she and her sister are autistic, Lara feels attacked, and hits back at her family by sharing all their problems, and further separating herself. Kapit doesn’t lean on stereotypes usually characterizing characters on the spectrum. Lara finds a reasonable way to interact with her family through the rabbi’s sermon during Yom Kippur, discovering the road to forgiveness.
VERDICT Disabilities are an everyday part of the protagonists’ lives and secondary to the issues they are dealing with here, making this a book that will appeal to readers of Cynthia Lord’s Rules. This is a worthy first purchase for school and public libraries.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing