This week for Marvelous Middle Grade Monday kicks off a special three book set of reviews. Read on to learn why…

The MG books I review come from authors, publishers, contests, and libraries. I only post reviews of books I can recommend. Of course the MG books I enjoy might not be the favorites of the intended audience—those 8 to 13 years of age. It was time to let them make the choice.

I asked three middle grade kids what book they were reading or had recently read. If the book was new to me I would then read the same book and post a review. I was hoping for maybe one match with the titles these kids gave me. I mean—come on—I’ve reviewed hundreds of books and read hundred more. One common book was almost a given.

Wishful thinking.

All three young readers had suggestions of books I had never read. Today’s book was recommended by eleven-year-old Carter—EDDIE RED UNDERCOVER-DOOM AT GRANT’S TOMB.

At least I wasn’t totally in the dark with this selection. I’d heard of the Eddie Red series when it began a few years ago with #1 MYSTERY ON MUSEUM MILE. The next year came #2 MYSTERY IN MAYAN MEXICO. And this brings us to #3 DOOM AT GRANT’S TOMB. Carter assured me I’d have no problem with what was going on in this third installment, despite it being the first for me. He was right.

Fast paced with enduring characters, especially the main one—Eddie Red (A code name for when he’s working with the police department). Eddie is an African-American 7th grader with a photographic memory. He can draw anything he sees down to the most minute detail. It’s because of this that he is contracted to work for the police on big cases. He does  his work in a surveillance van, far from the bad guys. Supposedly. Eddie has a tendency to sneak off to find his own answers. Joined by his best friend Jonah, the two create many exciting scenes.

I’ll be going back to read the first two novels. Eddie hooked me right in and thank you Carter for a great recommendation.



Eddie Red, the NYPD’s youngest crime-solving hero, smells trouble. Could he be the target of the elusive art thief Lars Heinrich, whose last robbery he ruined? If so, why won’t the police let Eddie help on the case? What are they hiding from him?

In the thrilling third installment of the Eddie Red Undercover series, Eddie will need some luck of the Irish as he races against the clock (and bombs and runaway subway cars) to stop what could be one of the greatest heists in history.


  1. The whole idea you’d be working undercover for the police would top the cool charts.
  2. It’s faced pace, tension filled, and loads of fun.
  3. Full page pictures are scattered throughout depicting Eddie’s drawings. They are done by a very talented, Marcos Calo. See some of his work here.
  4. Mystery and puzzles are the focus and in the back of the book is a special chapter on How to Become A Cryptographer.
  5. Eddie’s first person narrative is spot on for a seventh grader. He’ll quickly seem like an old friend.


The door opens. A familiar heavy-set figure with bushy eyebrows and sagging jowls is standing in the doorway. His dark eyes sweep the room until they settle on me. His nose wrinkles as if he smells bad cheese.

And my seventh grade year is officially ruined.

(From Marcia’s Author Website)

Marcia Wells has a Master’s degree in Spanish literature and has taught writing, Spanish, and math to middle and high school students for the past fifteen years.

When she’s not visiting relatives in New York City and planning new adventures for Eddie Red, she’s at home with her kids, husband, and other farm animals in Vermont.


I’ll have the next two reviews for my Kid Recommends posts next Friday and Monday. Stop by again to see if you are reading what actual MG kids are reading.

Make a comment if you have time. I enjoy reading all of them. Click on the comments link below.

Check the links to other Middle Grade novels over at Shannon Messenger’s Marvelous Middle Grade Monday post.



About Greg Pattridge

Climbing another mountain...always striving to reach the next peak in my life and career.
This entry was posted in Reviews, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. allenbookclub says:

    I love the idea of kids recommending books for you to read and review. I’m going to check this one out.

  2. I love how you let kids recommend books to you This one sounds great with the working with police aspect that makes the mystery even more realistic and the diversity.

  3. What a super cool way to find new books! I am suddenly inspired to grab the nearest middle-grade reading kid, and accept this challenge!

    Eddie Red Undercover sounds pretty cool, too. I’ve always had a soft spot for cryptography, so I think I’ll have to pick this one up. Many thanks for the recommend, and happy MMGM!

  4. cleemckenzie says:

    Going to the kids for book recommendations is a great idea. And it seems it paid off.

  5. Carter knows how to pick a great book! I love how you asked your students for suggestions for books you haven’t read. We may find ready interesting MG books for kids, but it may not be what they want to read. I loved everything about this cool series. Please tell Carter his book was a hit with all of us!

  6. Andrea Mack says:

    Great review! I love finding out about what kids are reading and enjoying!

  7. Wonderful review as usual, Greg. I am putting these books on my TBR list. Now, if I could just find time to read. (sigh)

  8. Tell your young reviewer thank-you from us. This looks like a terrific series!

  9. msyingling says:

    Eddie Redd is very popular here. It’s great that you asked actual children for recommendations! More people need to do this!

  10. Great feature; I like that you’re going to the kids for recommendations! And I haven’t read this book either. But I did love Encyclopedia Brown’s photogenic memory, so this one is sure to pique my fascination as well.

  11. Violet Tiger says:

    This sounds really fun! I think the covers are amazing. I like mystery books where protagonists are middle-schoolers. This reminds me of FRAMED! by James Ponti. Thanks for your review!

  12. Pingback: FIVE DAYS OF FAMOUS | Always in the Middle…

  13. Pingback: FAMILY GAME NIGHT… for Marvelous Middle Grade Monday | Always in the Middle…

Place your thoughts here with a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.