In The Mutual Admiration Society by Lesley Kagen we are taken into the lives of two young sisters, Tessie, and Birdie. Tessie is convinced that she can solve crimes and keeps her younger sister involved as well. She doesn’t feel that Birdie can do as well without her own involvement as she is very sweet, and just a tad weird.
Tessie is sure, however, of her own abilities and it is fun having a younger sister believe in her and all her adventures. After all, Tessie is known for her crime solving abilities. When they hear a scream one night and mysterious happenings, she knows that she is the only one that can find a murderer. For she is sure that is what she has witnessed.
Another friend, Charlie, finds himself intrigued as well and determines to help in the investigation. What Tessie finds as she tries to solve the case, that no one else shows an interest in, is that often what we see and hear can have many varied reasons. She also finds with encouragement, that her sister Birdie is much more than she seems, that she has thoughts and ideas that might more than take over her own. But her sweetness and attention to Tessie’s plots, keep them going, and creating a strong admiration for each other’s abilities and input.
This is a sweet and funny story of the kids in the neighborhood that are just a bit different, those who look behind the everyday, and develop stories and intrigues that make life in their home and neighborhood interesting…At least for themselves.
Kagen takes us into the past and into the life of a family that struggles just as many others of the time do. But she also shows us the hijinks of children as they find ways to enjoy their time away from school, and other troubles. Her characters are very like those we each grew up with, I am sure you can relate as you find the fun and danger in this work.
If you are looking for a good work for your youngster, or are trying to get your child to read, this is a fun and fast paced work of fiction, that will keep you looking for more. Kagen does an excellent job of taking us into the recent past and showing us a life many will remember. She also gives us insight into the endearing traits of how children grow in the process of finding their niche in life.