secretShakespeare’s Secret by Elise Broach
Release Date: May 1, 2005
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
Source: Personal Copy
Rating: starstarstarstarblank_star
Buy It: Amazon | IndieBound

A missing diamond, a mysterious neighbor, a link to Shakespeare-can Hero uncover the connections?

When Hero starts sixth grade at a new school, she’s less concerned about the literary origins of her Shakespearean name than about the teasing she’s sure to suffer because of it. So she has the same name as a girl in a book by a dusty old author. Hero is simply not interested in the connections.

But that’s just the thing; suddenly connections are cropping up all over, and odd characters and uncertain pasts are exactly what do fascinate Hero. There’s a mysterious diamond hidden in her new house, a curious woman next door who seems to know an awful lot about it, and then, well, then there’s Shakespeare. Not to mention Danny Cordova, only the most popular boy in school. Is it all in keeping with her namesake’s origin-just much ado about nothing? Hero, being Hero, is determined to figure it out.
In this fast-paced novel, Elise Broach weaves an intriguing literary mystery full of historical insights and discoveries. – Goodreads

To say I have a soft spot for childrens books is an understatement. I adore them. I was a voracious reader as a child and that has not changed now. Fine, grad school gets in the way now, but I still try to read as much as possible. (Has nothing to do with my fear of too many books too little time. Nope. No siree.) But seriously, childrens books: fabulous. I hate when people won’t read a book purely because it’s a kids book. My two friends and I run this book blog almost dedicated completely to YA books and the youngest one of us turns 24 at the end of May. We’re big fans of childrens books over here.

On to Shakespeare’s Secret. This is the story of Hero, yes her name is Hero and yes she hates it. She’s 12 and starting a new school, again. Her father, a Shakespeare scholar, got a new job, which means Hero gets to start fresh. Sadly, starting fresh isn’t as easy for her as it is for her sister Bea(trice).

The thing with Shakespeare’s Secret is Hero grows. I mean, she’s 12, that is her job. But she really grows in this novel, and not just because she helped to solve a mystery with the cute boy in the neighborhood and her next door neighbor. Although yes, that was helpful. It’s hard to say what is the heart of the story: Hero solving an awesome crime/mystery that took place in her house or growing up. Okay, not that hard. It was her growing up.