Mystery on Pine Lake
Wight, Tamra. Yarmouth, ME: Islandport Press, 2013. 9781934031865
Quantitative Reading Level:
This book has not been released yet. It is being marketed as a book for ages 8-12.
Qualitative Reading Analysis:
I would rate this as Middle Low on the “Text Complexity: Qualitative Measures Rubric for Literary Text”. It is a realistic fiction book with a single layer of complex meaning. Although it is a mystery it is not very complicated. The language is contemporary. The mystery is about loons but readers are given facts about loons at the beginning of each chapter which helps in understanding the text.
Cooper’s family has always loved the outdoors so naturally Cooper though running a campsite would be great for the family. Unfortunately the campground is so busy that he only sees his dad when they are cleaning bathrooms or picking up trash and his mom only seems to need him to watch his younger sister. Then Cooper discovers that the loons, which help draw tourists to the campground, are in danger of losing their eggs. With the help of a new friend, Packrat, Cooper discovers a way to save the loon’s eggs and unravels the mystery of who wants the loons gone.
Author’s Website: http://www.tamrawight.com/
This was a really enjoyable read. It was not a complex mystery by any means but very appropriate for grades 3-5. The length of the text was perfect for the intended age and it had just enough mystery and suspense without going too far. My students especially will enjoy that it is set in Maine.
Subjects/Themes: Family, Man vs. Nature
Cooper: Cooper loves nature and wants to be a game warden someday. He believes someone is out to harm the loons and is determined to find out who and protect the loons.
Packrat: Packrat is a seasonal camper and Cooper’s new friend. He helps Cooper solve the mystery and save the loons.
High Interest Annotation: Who would want to harm some loons? It is up to Cooper and Packrat to find out.