BOOK DETAILS

The Case of the Halloween Heist (Magical Mystery Series) (Volume 1)

The Case of the Halloween Heist (Magical Mystery Series) (Volume 1)

by Brenda Elser

ISBN: 9780988690400

Publisher Blowing Leaf Publications INC.

Published in Christian Books & Bibles/Holidays, Children's Books/Mysteries, Espionage, & Detectives, Children's Books/Action & Adventure, Literature & Fiction/Contemporary, Children & Teens (Young Adult), Literature & Fiction, Children's Books

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Book Description

When Eva, Lauren and Robert receive a mysterious note telling them that all the Halloween candy in their neighborhood has been stolen (and exchanged for dental floss?) they decide that the thief has messed with the wrong Junior Detectives!

They set off to track down and return the missing loot to the rightful owners! What they didn't count on was running into so many mystical obstacles. If they can get past a rambling Jack O' Lantern, forlorn ghost, evil Tooth Fairy, slimy Rot Guards and one eccentric mother, they may just get their candy back before dark!

Sample Chapter

The Note

It was a beautiful fall day just after Halloween – the kind of day that was cold when you stood in the shade, but when you stood in the sun it was too warm for a coat. The wind had a hint of more serious winter weather to come, and the trees had blanketed the ground with their colorful leaves.

Eva was in her front yard bundled up in a tan coat and striped scarf. Her mother had insisted that she also put on a bright green knit cap to protect her ears from the insistent cold breeze. The hat kept her normally wild, strawberry blonde curls contained, with only a few strands curling out around the edges near her face.

She’d finally finished piling the leaves into what she thought would be a big enough mound to jump into. This had been no easy task since the wind had worked equally hard at blowing them all away.

"Whew!" she huffed as her pretty blue eyes examined her work. "That ought to last for at least two or three good jumps if I hurry!"

She walked away from the pile to put the rake down, and turned to examine a nearby branch. Was the branch close enough for her to leap into the leaves from there? She wondered when, quite suddenly, she felt someone rush past her shoulder followed by a loud war cry of “Whoop!”

Eva stood, her mouth open in amazement, watching all of her carefully raked leaves scatter to the wind. Someone had just jumped into her leaf pile. “Someone stole my first leaf jump!” she fumed, clenching her hands at her sides. She didn’t even need to see the head peeking out to know who that someone was.

“Robert!” she hollered, stomping one high-top tennis shoe and shaking her fists in the air.

“Hey Eva,” he poked his tousled head up and grinned at her. Robert’s short brown hair was usually messy so Eva didn’t think anything of the twig that now stuck out from behind his ear. (He also generally wore the same mischievous grin as he wore now.) What pushed Eva’s temper over the edge, though, was the look of fun in his brown eyes.

“Oh! I oughta! Oh! I’m gonna….” Eva sputtered dropping her fists and stomping toward Robert, still buried up to his chin in her leaves.

“It wasn’t my fault!” Robert laughed, scrambling around on all fours. “I was in such a hurry to get here and tell you something important that I couldn’t stop fast enough… I… I tripped into your pile of leaves…”

“Gah!” Eva responded, yelling her own war cry and throwing her arms up into the air, preparing to pounce on the leaf-jump thief (and perhaps make him eat a leaf or two), when she heard her name being called from across the yard.

“Eva! Oh, Eva! Wait! I have to talk to you! I have to tell you!” Lauren yelled running across the yard toward them. She came to a breathless, jerky stop beside Eva and began talking before she could even catch her breath, “Eva… (pant) have you... (gulp)... checked your Halloween candy… (three more panting breaths then a single finger held up, asking them to give her a second.)… today?” There. She finally got it out.

Lauren was Eva’s best friend, an adorable little blond who was a bit on the plump side, and who didn’t usually run since it wasn’t ladylike. This explained why her dash across the yard seemed to have taken her breath away.

Eva waited a moment to respond while she gave Robert the evil eye, which meant “I have not forgotten this,” and let her friend finish catching her breath before she replied. “No, my mom puts my Halloween candy in a cabinet in the kitchen. I only get four pieces a day.” In Eva’s opinion, this was supremely unfair.

“Well, because it’s,” Lauren began, but Robert leapt up out of the remaining leaves and yelled, “Yours is gone too?” His sudden outburst caused Lauren to scream and spring straight into the air flailing her arms and legs.

“Geeze! Robert! Were you hiding there the whole time?” Lauren shouted, clutching her heart. “You practically scared the freckles right off my nose!” She crossed her arms and glared at him for good measure.

Eva and Robert both silently giggled and grinned at one another until Eva remembered she was mad at Robert too, and joined Lauren in giving him a good glare until he looked confused and shrugged at them both.

“Okay, okay,” Eva said, mentally reminding herself to get back at Robert later for stealing her leaf jump. “What’s up with your Halloween candy?” she asked, redirecting her friends to the more important topic of candy.

“It’s gone!” they shouted in unison.

With another quick glare at Robert, Lauren continued, “This morning after breakfast, I was going to count my stash again, but I discovered my candy was gone, and in its place was a note that saaaiiid…,” Lauren drug the word out as she dug in her pocket for a piece of paper which she pulled out and read:

Dear Trick or Treater,

“Sorry I had to snag your stash

But I’m down on luck and I needed some ‘cash’

Better this doesn’t rot the teeth out of your head

Here’s some floss for you instead.”

P.S.…You will thank me later!

“Yes! I have exactly the same note!” Robert said, pulling it from his pocket and holding it up along with a tube of dental floss.

“Well! I’ve called Suzann, Brandon and Jenna and they all have the exact same note, and floss instead of their Halloween candy,” Lauren said.

“You actually called Brandon Miller?” Eva blushed. “What did he say? What did he sound like? Did he ask about me?”

“Oh for cryin’ out loud, Eva!” Robert rolled his eyes. “Brandon said he was missing his candy, of course. Geeze! Girls…” he muttered while shoving his hands into his pockets.

The three of them stood for a moment silently looking back and forth at one another. “Do you suppose all the children’s Halloween candy everywhere was taken?” Eva whispered.

“Well,” suggested Lauren, “maybe we should just check to see if yours is still there or if you have a note too. Let’s go ask your mom.”

With silent nods they all agreed and turned to dash up the slight hill toward Eva’s house. Eva led the way through the mud room and into her kitchen. There they found Mrs. O’Hare sitting at their old oak table watching the local news station on their small kitchen computer.

“Mom!” Eva began, but Mrs. O’Hare held up a hand telling them to stop and wait a moment.

“This just in!” the broadcaster announced in the way that broadcasters spoke which told you that what was “just in” was very important. “We are receiving reports from all across the town of Willows Heights that children’s Halloween candy is missing. Thus far 88 concerned parents and their children have called the station to report that they woke up this morning with their candy vanished and a strange note with floss left in its place. The police have been notified but an active investigation has not been launched since it appears only candy has been taken. Could this be a prank by some strange criminal? Or, and this reporter must ask, have parents found a creative way to remove the Halloween candy temptation from their children and get them to floss and brush instead? Details at eleven. This is Ted Tenesky Temple reporting for station 103.”

“My, oh my,” Mrs. O’Hare whispered to herself, “Suspecting parents when it sounds so much like something Diva would do…”

“What, mom?”

“Sorry, nothing dear. Did you need me?” she asked, smiling at them with a twinkle in her eye.

“Did you hear what the news guy said? The candy is gone in our town!” Robert crowed, pointing at the computer.

“You don’t think parents would do such a thing, do you?” Lauren asked quietly with a peek under her lashes at Eva’s mother.

“Mom,” Eva interrupted her friends, “Can you get my Halloween candy down? We want to investigate the crime that has been committed!” Eva announced, patting her pockets in search of the Junior Detective notebook she carried at all times. Robert and Lauren nodded behind her.

“Oh my, of course! What an excellent idea,” Mrs. O’Hare said standing up and moving to the cupboard. There, she took down a very empty-looking bag. “Oh…yes. I’m afraid, your candy is missing too, dear.” Eva let out a squeak and rushed to her bag to find exactly the same note Lauren and Robert were now handing to her mother.

“Aww, Mom! This is exactly why you should let me have more than a few pieces a day! I only got eight pieces before this happened,” Eva huffed.

“Now dear,” her mother soothed her, rubbing her shoulder, “Don’t worry. I’m sure with your great detective skills – and with the help of your friends – you’ll find your missing candy in no time.”

Eva felt a bit better hearing her mother’s confidence in her and puffed out her chest. After all, she had read all of the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boy Detective novels and she did have her Junior Detective hand manual…

Now the question was where to start?

Continues...

Excerpted from "The Case of the Halloween Heist (Magical Mystery Series) (Volume 1)" by Brenda Elser. Copyright © 2012 by Brenda Elser. Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Excerpts are provided solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
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Author Profile

Brenda Elser

Brenda Elser

Brenda Elser’s friendship with Kristin inspired the Magical Mystery Series but the pretending and play began long ago when she was growing up in the mountains of Montana. She has always been a day-dreamer but it was only within the last 7 years that she began to write seriously and share her stories. Today she lives in Issaquah, WA with her hero for a husband and their perfect pooch. Thanks to help from her amazing co-author, their editor, and their very talented illustrator she is has published three young adult chapter books and is currently working on a fourth.

View full Profile of Brenda Elser

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