Dead Giveaway, by Janette Brazel

When Ellie and Zac’s Great Grandma Lola dies, the twins hope that she has left some of her fortune to their parents. Things have been tough for them since their Uncle Bert lost all their money in a failed cane-toad stuffing enterprise.

But the twins and the rest of the Hunter clan are disappointed to find that there is no money in the will – just some wierd and mostly useless gifts and a bizarre riddle which must be solved before the missing money can be found and divided up.The fourteen family members gather in Grandma Lola’s house to follow the clues and try to unravel the mystery.

Zac and Ellie love puzzles, and they lead the way in unravelling this one, in spite of crotchety Uncle Bert who thinks children should be neither seen nor heard, and the tensions between various family members.

When everyone else seems to have given up on solving the mystery, the twins persevere and make the vital breakthrough.

Dead Giveaway is a fun mystery for 10 to 12 year old readers, with plenty of chance to solve the pieces of the puzzle. Author Janette Brazel has a fine sense of humour and a great ability to add just the right balance of the bizarre.

Great readng.

Dead Giveaway, by Janette Brazel
Koala Books, 2004