||Sept 15, 2004
Book 3 of the Kim & Kelly Mystery Series - Trade Secret. A trip to Egypt turns out to be more dangerous than expected when the young sleuths encounter a most cunning cat burgler bent on stealing an ancient treasure and obtaining a secret item that's the key to her survival.
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Kelly accompanies her mom and dad on a business trip to Cairo, Egypt, which just happens to coincide with a visit from the world's most successful cat burglar, who is there to steal a rare gold coin - the key to unlocking a hidden treasure; a prize worth the thief's life if not retrieved in a timely fashion. Little does the cat burglar know that Detective Eddie Bancroft is in hot pursuit to prevent the theft and catch who cannot be caught.
Tension builds as seemingly random mishaps follow Kelly and their guide, who is in possession of the coin, or is it an ancient curse?
When Kim and her mom arrive in Cairo, Kelly fills her in on the mysterious happenings. Determined to unravel the link between the coin, the thief and the encounters, Kim and Kelly team up with Detective Eddie Bancroft, to crack the case and discover the cat burglar's secret.
“Oh, my! Kim, bring me the coin, quick,” I nearly shouted.
Kim fell to her knees at my side, fumbling to get the coin out of her pocket.
“What is it?” she asked.
“Look here,” I pointed at a tiny opening above a row of hieroglyphics and just above the opening were the same type of stones as that on the coin.
“It’s the same,” she whispered, “and look, the engravings match, too.”
“This is amazing,” I panted with excitement, “the same writing, the same stones and...” I held my breath while placing the coin to the opening, matching the shape perfectly, “the same size.”
“This is it, this has to be it. Now we’ll see what all the fuss over this coin is really about,” Kim smiled triumphantly.
“Okay, my dears, it’s time to go,” Uncle Mitchell said happily as he maneuvered his rather large body size back into the chamber. He stopped abruptly when he spied us on the floor at the foot of the sarcophagus and his smile quickly faded. “What is it you are doing?” he asked.
Kim and I looked up and smiled politely, hoping to cover up any suspicions, but before we could give him an answer there was a slight rumbling and shaking from above, forcing Uncle Mitchell to look away, and then sand began to sift in through the ceiling. Cries from the workers could be heard, joined in with those of our moms; then there was a loud splintering of wood. Kim took that opportunity to secretly grab the coin and stuff it in her pocket.
“Move! Quickly!” Uncle Mitchell ordered.
We sprang to our feet and ran for the entrance, but it was too late, sand poured in blocking the way out. We were trapped!
Wonderful and intriguing
Reviewer, Round Table Reviews
Trade Secret, written by TJ Perkins, is a story about curiosity, adventure, danger and girlfriends. The third book in the Kim and Kelly Mystery series takes the girls to Egypt where a procession of unusual characters and strange coincidences alert the girls to trouble. All of this happens under the watchful eye of their parents and other adults, who are oblivious to the whole situation. Their adventure introduces them to ancient artifacts, Egyptian tombs, archeological digs, the desert and daily Egyptian Life.
Kim and Kelly are in a serious detective phase in their lives. They are suspicious of everyone and everything. It is not their imagination, something sinister is going on and they are determined to find out what it is. The relationship between the girls is well defined and believable. When a boy, acting as their guide, prefers one girl over the other some jealously is noted. However, given their strong friendship and mutual fascination for solving mysteries, they quickly forget about him.
Trade Secret is a simple story that is easy to follow and a little predictable. There are a few exciting moments and an unexpected twist at the end of the book. Descriptions of the exotic settings are a little sparse but enough to give the young reader a good picture in their mind. Throughout the book, TJ Perkins demonstrates a wonderful use of higher-level vocabulary words, figurative language and sarcasm. Her use of language makes this an excellent read for the 9 to 12-year-old child. Little girls will especially identify with these strong, smart and independent characters.
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