Book Reviews

Book Review: A Pocket Full of Murder

by R. J. Anderson

Life may be challenging for Isaveth Breck, but it’s not too difficult. Yes, her family is shunned because of their beliefs and her father struggles to find work as a result, but they all have each other and they make do.

However, Isaveth’s world is tipped upside-down when her father is convicted of murder.

Isaveth knows that her father isn’t a murderer, even though everything seems to be pointing to him. Determined, she sets out to figure out who the real murder is, joined by her new friend Quiz, a street boy with secrets of his own.

As Isaveth and Quiz further their investigation, they realize that they might be getting in over their heads with solving the murder. But time is ticking, and Isaveth refuses to let her innocent father be convicted of the crime.

I am a huge fan of R. J. Anderson’s books. And A Pocket Full of Murder is a fabulous middle grade mystery with a dash of magic.

And speaking of magic, I’ll jump right into that. I loved the magic system. In the story world, there are two types of magic: Common Magic, and Sagery. Sagery is restricted to the high society, while Common Magic can be done by anyone. And Common Magic requires baking.

I loved the idea of having to bake magic! It was so neat, and something I’ve never seen in other stories. I’m also curious to learn more about Sagery, which I’m fairy certain will happen during the sequel, A Little Taste of Poison.

I liked all of the characters in the story, though Quiz was definitely my favorite. He was great.

I also really enjoyed the setting and how it was a blend of fantasy and a sort of Industrial Revolution-esq time period.

As far as the plot goes, I really enjoyed it. However, I can’t comment on how strong the plot twists were because this was my second time reading A Pocket Full of Murder. And while I didn’t remember everything about the story, I remembered enough that I wasn’t surprised by everything.

I absolutely adored A Pocket Full of Murder, and can’t wait to read the sequel.

Cautions: brief, non-graphic mention of a character being blinded; non-descriptive mentions of a character being murdered***

***Please note that it has been a while since I read A Pocket Full of Murder. While I did not take notes of what cautions there were in the story, these are the cautions I remember.

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