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Blakeslee, Mary.

Toronto, Overlea House, 1987. 116pp, paper, ISBN 0-7172-2281-0 (cloth) $15.95, 0-7172-2273-X (paper) $3.95. (A Lemon Street Gang Adventure). Distributed by Grolier. CIP

Grades 4 to 6
Reviewed by Pearl Herscovitch

Volume 16 Number 1
1988 January

Set in a small Canadian town, Mary Blakeslee's latest novel portrays two eleven-year-old boys who find themselves caught in a mob-related diamond theft when they visit the carnival. Matthew, an only child, is burdened with an overprotective mother with a heart problem, while Jason comes from a relatively relaxed environment.

Matthew faces a dilemma when Jason disappears from the tattooed lady's tent. Fearful of his mother's reaction, he overrides his concern for Jason and withholds information that would lead to his mother's discovery of his carnival visit. However, a heroic last-minute decision brings Matthew and the police to the scene of the crime, saving Jason from sure death at the hands of the diamond thieves. In a particularly forced ending, families are reunited and love and understanding abound.

This is a formula novel, dismally predictable and almost completely unrelieved by humour. Characters are stereotyped and their conflicts scarcely believable.

Pearl Herscovitch, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alta.
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