Rock Harbor Search and Rescue / by Coleen Coble and Robin Caroll. 6/18/2013

Rock Harbor Search and Rescue / by Coleen Coble and Robin Caroll

INT (MS) Grades 3-6 Rating: 5

Award-winning author Colleen Coble collaborates with Robin Caroll to present Rock Harbor Search and Rescue, a children’s mystery series set in the familiar Rock Harbor, Michigan, featuring some characters from Coble’s Rock Harbor adult series.

In Rock Harbor Search and Rescue, thirteen year old Emily’s stepmom, Naomi and her dog Charley are part of the Rock Harbor Search and Rescue team. Emily wants to be a part of the team and is saving the money to buy a puppy of her own to train.

But when an expensive necklace disappears while in her care, she must prove her innocence to everyone who considers her guilty, including her dad. Only her friend Olivia believes she is innocent. Her dad wants to believe her but the evidence (she has motive and means) makes it difficult, so she turns over her savings to the owner of the necklace.

While she works to clear her name and find the real culprit, she must deal with middle school girl-drama. She grapples with her faith (“Why God would allow her to be accused of wrongdoing?”), as well as the Native American beliefs about evil spirits (“Is the Windingo real?”).

Coble and Carrol do an excellent job of taking that familiar series and creating a good clean mystery/suspense appropriate for upper elementary readers. Coble fans will appreciate the plot twists and a visit with the familiar Rock Harbor characters. This new series will earn new and younger fans.

Rock Harbor Search and Rescue is told from Emily’s point of view and readers will appreciate the realistic narrative. The series includes mystery, action, suspense, and loose ends, leaving room for story development in the next book.

Highly recommended for school libraries and youth collections in public libraries.

Carol R. Gehringer

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