The Westing Game

THE WESTING GAME came in at #11 on the Fuse  #8  countdown of the top 100 Chapter books.   Whenever any of my writing students express an interest in mysteries, this is one of the two or three books that I suggest.  Usually, I like to stick to books published in the 21st century when I make recommendations because this also gives them a better idea of the current market.  But THE WESTING GAME is so brilliantly executed that I make an exception.  And goodness, does this book hold up well!  Books like CHASING VERMEER and THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY are its direct literary descendents. 

Ellen Raskin brilliantly inserted the clues that  whisper into a smooth narrative.  So people who want to write mysteries should definitely check out her technique.  As I mentioned in my CONSPIRACY OF KINGS post, I tend to read and re-read mysteries for that very reason. While my YA mystery, SUSPECT,  falls more into the Elizabeth Peters/Barbara Michaels tradition of romantic suspense, I certainly learned a lot from Ms. Raskin.

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