A room locked for fifty years.
A valuable peacock ring.
A mysterious brother-sister duo.
Paloma Marquez is traveling to Mexico City, birthplace of her deceased father, for the very first time. She's hoping that spending time in Mexico will help her unlock memories of the too-brief time they spent together.
While in Mexico, Paloma meets Lizzie and Gael, who present her with an irresistible challenge: The siblings want her to help them find a valuable ring that once belonged to beloved Mexican artist Frida Kahlo. Finding the ring means a big reward -- and the thanks of all Mexico. What better way to honor her father than returning a priceless piece of jewelry that once belonged to his favorite artist! But the brother and sister have a secret. Do they really want to return the ring, or are they after something else entirely?
Gr 4-6—Paloma Marquez isn't too excited about her first trip to Mexico. Her mom has a fellowship and has dragged Paloma along to introduce her to her father's heritage. Paloma is annoyed that she has to study Spanish in summer school instead of heading to the beach with her friends. Despite her low expectations, she quickly makes some intriguing friends and gets involved in a mystery allowing her to emulate her favorite protagonist, Lulu Pennywhistle. Although the secondary characters are somewhat underdeveloped, the plot moves along at a good pace and young mystery fans will want to keep turning pages. The mystery revolves around Frida Kahlo, so readers learn quite a bit about Mexican art and culture. VERDICT A well-paced mystery plot and a rich exploration of the art of Frida Kahlo make this a good purchase for most middle grade collections.—Gesse Stark-Smith, Multnomah County Library, Portland, ORCopyright 2017 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.