Source: the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: September 20, 2015
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Blurb from goodreads:
Miss Maddie Hatter, renegade daughter of a powerful Steamlord, is scraping a precarious living as a fashion reporter when the story of a lifetime falls into her lace-gloved hands.
Baron Bodmin, an adventurer with more failed quests than fingernails, has vanished in circumstances that are odd even for him.
While he is supposedly hunting the fabled Eye of Africa diamond in the Nubian desert, his expeditionary airship is found adrift off the coast of England. Maddie was the last reporter to see the potty peer alive. If she can locate the baron or the Eye of Africa, her career will be made.
Outraged investors and false friends complicate her quest, and a fiendish figure lurks in the shadows, ready to snatch the prize . . . at any price.
Madeleine Main-Bearing, better known as Maddie Hatter, has fled her sheltered, cushioned life of the upper class in England and is working in Egypt as a fashion reporter for an English newspaper. But what she really wants is to be an investigative reporter. When the story of the Baron's disappearance hits, Maddie jumps on it, hoping it'll be her big break. She gets an allowance from her father provided no one in their social circle ever sees her or identifies her. So of course this mystery involves people from their social circle. :D
"Maddie Hatter and the Deadly Diamond" is a fun romp. Maddie is smart, intrepid, brave, resourceful, and determined. She asks for help when she needs it and thinks fast on her feet. Barnard gives us some fun inventions, lots of humor (some of the character names are a nod to the board game Clue), and vivid characters paired with action, adventure, and hint, just a hint mind you, of romance. The mystery has a nice mix of easy clues, harder clues and red herrings. Part of the story has a Gothic feel but overall, the story is a light-hearted mystery. I hope there will be more Maddie Hatter adventures.