The Case of the Missing Moonstone

Written by Jordan Stratford Kelly Murphy (illus.)
Review by Elizabeth Hawksley Freya Sutcliff

1826, London. Eleven-year-old Ada Byron is a mathematical wizard but hopeless with people. So when she meets Mary Godwin, who is good with people and loves mysteries, they don’t at first hit it off. But then they start the Wollstonecraft Detective Agency for the Apprehension of Clever Criminals which, they hope, will use both their skills. Their first case involves Miss Rebecca Verdigris’s missing moonstone. Rebecca’s maid, Rosie, has confessed to the crime, but Rebecca does not believe she is guilty. But who else could have taken it?; surely not her handsome fiancé, Beau Datchery, or Mr Abernathy, a wealthy family friend? And what has mesmerism to do with the case?

I enjoyed this book. It zips along at a cracking pace, and I enjoyed the ‘spot the hidden historical reference’. The author has played about with time to allow Ada, daughter of Lord Byron, and Mary, daughter of feminist Mary Wollstonecraft, to become contemporaries. And a disguised young Charles Dickens and Percy Shelley join in the fun. My one niggle is that the author gets Ada’s title wrong. Ada was never ‘Lady’ Ada as Lord Byron was only a baron.

Girls of 10 plus should enjoy this book.

Elizabeth Hawksley


The Case of the Missing Moonstone ticks so many good book categories: a story of friendship, mystery and two very bright girls makes the book incredibly enjoyable, and there wasn’t a moment when I didn’t want to read on.

The author cleverly develops at least two simultaneous plot lines, keeping the action and suspense rolling throughout. It was fast moving and the descriptive writing really plunged you into the heart of the story. I would recommend this book for any readers who enjoy detective novels and creative ideas, and also an intriguing story-line behind it all.

Freya Sutcliffe, age 12