The Paper Route

Fiction - Mystery - Murder
292 Pages
Reviewed on 08/06/2022
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Alex Ndirangu for Readers' Favorite

The Paper Route, by Jacqueline Cayer Nelson McDonald, is an engrossing mystery set in the 1960s that follows a clever little girl whose deeds transcend her years. Jackie is a natural-born observer whose curiosity leads her to notice details that adults would miss. Her inquisitiveness about the people and events around her leads to her becoming involved in a murder investigation in which her neighbor is on trial for murder. She meets Detective John Dahm and wants to prove to him that her accused neighbor, whom she has been watching for several nights, is innocent. How will Jackie be able to use her gift of observation to solve the murder mystery? How will her efforts contribute to establishing her neighbor's innocence and will the investigator base his decision on the comments of this young lady?

The plot was interesting and I liked the author's writing style. Jackie's meeting with Detective Dahm and providing information on the first murder was only the beginning of an exciting investigative journey that led to the discovery of two other cases of murder. I particularly liked how Jacqueline Cayer Nelson McDonald incorporated coming-of-age themes into a mystery plot. Young Jackie, for example, learned and gained many new insights from participating in exciting and unusual events. I liked the way that the author opted to include the concept of family in her work. I thought that Jackie's family members and their lively interactions gave the narrative a realistic and appealing element. The plot's wonderful side story about how a happy, functioning family runs is what I appreciated most about it. The entire presentation of The Paper Route is admirable, and the author draws readers into a mysterious and intriguing plot.