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The Secret Formula (Bella Street Mysteries, #1)
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The Secret Formula (Bella Street Mysteries #1)

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4.13 of 5 stars 4.13  ·  rating details  ·  39 ratings  ·  25 reviews
Set in Manhattan, The Secret Formula follows the adventures of Bella, a cool, skateboarding champion and daughter of a glamorous fashion editor, and her friend Felix, a jazz musician and crime buff. Felix is convinced New York is still a seething mass of hard talking criminals - Bella laughs at him but Felix will have the last laugh.

Doc Gutson and her band of misfits schem
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Paperback, 168 pages
Published June 7th 2011 by Bacon & Eggs Media (first published April 10th 2011)
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Community Reviews

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Brenda
I was lucky enough to receive a copy of this from the author, free onto my Kindle...thanks Clare:)

Twelve year old Bella lived with her mother, Emerald Street, the editor of a fancy fashion magazine, in a very nice townhouse in Manhattan. When Emerald had to go away for a few weeks, she organised a live-in Nanny to look after Bella. But the Nanny wasn’t who she seemed, and trouble started almost immediately Bella’s Mum left.

Bella and her best friend Felix find themselves in the middle of a scheme
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Kim
This novel is a thrilling story designed for the curious mind of a younger audience. The character, Bella along with her friend Felix, are a cross between Eloise and Nancy Drew. Together they must solve the mystery of the new nanny that has come to watch Bella but turns out to not be much of a nanny after all. The story moves at a fast pace and there is a lot of action which is perfect to keep a young mind captivated. I enjoyed reading this book and recommend it to all ages.
Lyle Scott Lee
Aug 27, 2011 Lyle Scott Lee rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Young adult
There's bits and pieces of both "The Wizard of Oz" and "Doctor Doolittle" in Clare Havens' "A Bella Street Mystery: The Secret Formula". If you like those two classics, you should have no trouble falling for this contemporary story.

From the penthouse overlooking a dark city, Bella Street, along with her dog Coco, finds herself captive to Doc "Dorothy" Gutson, a cruel and shady "Queen of Evil" posing as a nanny and, supposedly, hired by Bella's absent mother, Emerald. Instead of trying to find he
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Read2review

** For the full review please check out www.read2review.com **

As a review site of ALL GENRES it always makes me smile when we are able to deviate away from our “normal” reading tastes into something new and exciting. I don’t read many Thrillers, although it is my intention to read more during 2012; including the sequel to The Secret Formula.

The story is about a 13 year old girl named Bella who is the daughter of a famous fashion designer. While her mother goes out of town she has a new nanny to
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Dan
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nina
I was lucky enough to receive this book from first reads. I found it a very enjoyable read, about a girl, who struggles to overcome a criminal posing as her nanny. I think that it would be a great read for a 12+ audience. It does get a little bit gritty in parts for some of the younger ones. The villians were very unlikable characters, and I enjoyed seeing their antics. It was a suspensful novel, with some great characters. I'm not sure, but I get the feeling that this is designed to be a series ...more
Vannessa T
I was fortunate to receive this from a Goodreads Giveaway. This is a fun thriller, with believable characters whom teens can relate to; especially Bella. Havens does a wonderful job at describing Manhattan, she leaves you feeling as though you have been there.
Bella and her friend Felix have quite the adventure trying to solve the mystery of her new Nanny and ensuring that the secret formula keeps out of the hands of evil. This story is fast paced and perfect for the intended age group(early teen
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Melanie Cusick-Jones

A really good, easy, enjoyable read. The larger-than-life characters immediately draw you in to this fast-paced tale - it felt like I was partway between Zoolander and Raymond Chandler (and I like both so that was a good thing!)

I'd say this would be best aimed at a young, YA audience (11 - 14ish) and would be ideal for fans of Eoin Colfer ready to graduate from Artemis Fowl.

Great stuff - am off to get the next one now.
Literary  Chanteuse
An awesome mystery that starts out with a girl who you think has an over active imagination but in fact has the makings of a good sleuth. Very fun and creative! A definitely good choice for a middle grader who likes mysteries.
Bella Street
Had to get it because the title matches my name! :)

My daughter read it (the main character is 12) and LOVED it. She said she wished it was a movie and hoped there were more. I wanted to pass on her recommendation!
A.B. Shepherd
This is a short book, but what it lacks in length it makes up in substance.

A good mystery/adventure for teens, but a little too scary in parts for younger kids.
Ashley
Awesome book, for teens! It was a very short book that was packed with action. I enjoyed the book but, personally, I enjoy books with more detail and length.
Glenda Alexander
Jun 24, 2011 Glenda Alexander marked it as to-read
Sound like a really fun read!
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Review by Kate

The story is about a 13 year old girl named Bella who is the daughter of a famous fashion designer. While her mother goes out of town she has a new nanny to look after her, she’s managed to drive away all the others. However this nanny is not a nanny at all but Doc Guston.

Doc manages to completely ruin Bella’s life by firing people Bella knows and loves, putting an electric shock collar around her dog’s neck and with threats to kill. Bella knows something bad is going on and tries
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Dan Rogers
Bella Street lives in New York City where she loves to compete in skateboard competitions. She is best friends with Felix Samson, a 13 year old jazz musician who enjoys watching old black and white movies. Bella's mom (Emerald) is usually too busy being a fashion editor to spend time with her, so she hires one nanny after another, each one staying only as long as Bella lets them. Most she has been able to send away quite quickly, driving them nuts with her incessant questioning. Not that she doe ...more
Zuzu Burford
I received a free copy from the author.
What a great YA book. As a 69 year old granddad I thoroughly, thoroughly, enjoyed this story. Well written, believable plot, nasty villains, and a brave heroine, with an exciting climax. What more could you ask for?
I only wish some of the long winded adult mystery books read recently could keep me as entertained.
Congratulations. More please.
Catherine Milmine
I was lucky to receive a copy from the Author of Bella Street mystery the Secret Formula, enjoyed it very much and actually had a hard time putting it down and read it in one day. Loved the main character Bella and her adventures that kept me turning the pages.
Jan
Bella Street is an expert at scaring or intimidating nannies. So when her mother brings in Miss Dorothy to take care of Bella while she is away at a yoga retreat, Bella is not too concerned. But Miss Dorothy has her own reasons for being there and they do not include taking care of Bella.

This was a fun book. There is action and mystery. I think kids and tweens will love reading about Bella's adventure. I am already planning to read the next one.
Bonnie
My kid actually read this and he enjoyed it a lot. He also said that it was a fun mystery and he was glad I won this. :)
Seb Havens
Awesome Read One of my best books.
Andrew
I won this book for free as part of the Goodreads First Reads program.
This is a book clearly aimed at someone much younger than me, the back cover says "tween" which I assume is post kid, Pre teen. It was okay, but when you remember tha kids of that age would also be above to read thinks like Harry Potter, I have to say that this all did seem rather simplistic, the characters were more like cariacatures and it didn't grab me. Having said that, I am not the target audience and I am sure that som
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Carol K.
I liked this book I won on Goodreads...the excitement kept going, the plot was intriguing. Some things could have been made more believable, even though this is fiction, like a few more breaks for the heroine, maybe being able to contact her mother about the goings-on, more success in escaping...
Jo-Ann Murphy
I found this bookvery disturbing, especially the tretment of the dog. I wanted to bat the mother over the head fo hrirresponsible behavior. At times, the story drew me in, but overall it just distrubed me and it was not an enjoyable read.
Theadora
It wasn't the best. But, hey. Still looking forward to other Bella Street books.
Melissa
Feb 20, 2012 Melissa marked it as to-read
Shelves: i-own
I received the book for free through Goodreads First Reads.
charity
charity marked it as to-read
Mar 24, 2015
Jamala
Jamala marked it as to-read
Mar 23, 2015
Hiroko Ortiz
Hiroko Ortiz marked it as to-read
Feb 25, 2015
Sally906
Sally906 marked it as to-read
Feb 06, 2015
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Growing up under the wide East Anglian skies, made famous by artist John Constable, and a love of Agatha Christie, Margery Allingham and DL Sayers, inspired Clare to write her 'Constable Country Mysteries'. The first in the series, 'Writer's Block', about the untimely death of muck raking social climber Daniel Flynn, was published in May 2014.

Likewise, living in Manhattan and loving the black and
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More about Clare Havens...

Other Books in the Series

Bella Street Mysteries (2 books)
  • Doc Gutson's Revenge (Bella Street Mysteries, #2)
Writer's Block (Constable Country Mysteries) Doc Gutson's Revenge (Bella Street Mysteries, #2) The Bellamy Bird

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“Ah ha!' the Doc screeched suddenly, wheeling around. ''The salicylic acid! Maybe it SHOULD have been heated first!” 1 likes
“Just making the cement now, only takes five minutes."
"I did it in four once," Pauly whispered boastfully to Johnny, "but if I'm honest, I was never completely happy that it set properly."
"Who was it for?"
"Big Joe the Hammer."
"Oh, yeah," Johnny nodded. "Didn't I hear he was spotted in Vegas a few weeks back?"
Pauly nodded morosely.
"Yeah, like I said, I didn't think it had set properly.”
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