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Mister Max: The Book of Secrets: Mister Max 2 (Mister Max #2)

3.87  ·  Rating Details  ·  270 Ratings  ·  44 Reviews
From Newbery Medalist Cynthia Voigt, Book II in the exciting adventures of Mister Max—12-year-old detective in disguise.

In Mister Max: The Book of Lost Things, Max Starling proved that he is more than a detective, he’s a Solutioneer. His reputation for problem-solving has been spreading—and now even the mayor wants his help.

Someone is breaking windows and setting fires
ebook, 368 pages
Published September 23rd 2014 by Knopf Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 2014)
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Aug 01, 2014 Joan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 5th grade mystery lovers and those who read book 1
This suffered from the problems of many bridging novels. The first one was excellent and I am looking forward to the third, but this one was a bit slow in parts, with some of the mysteries abruptly wrapped up and characters introduced in preparation for book 3, the last of a trilogy. I'm also not so sure people could read this one without reading book one first, especially for an explanation of "solutioneer". Max is still trying to be financially independent so he doesn't have to rely on his Dad ...more
Nov 08, 2015 Jenn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another enjoyable read! I really like this series, looking forward to reading the next one :)
Michael Fitzgerald
This just gets more and more implausible. It's supposed to be realistic, I think, but I'm not buying it. You have twelve-year-olds pondering the meaning of life and thoughtfully considering their future careers as if they were thirty. The mysteries are also dull and (at least to this point) unrelated. They are handily resolved to no great effect. I'm having a hard time seeing why a publisher thought this was such a good idea. I also found the illustrations poorly done - most of the boys look ali ...more
Michelle McBeth
SUMMARY: This sequel to Mr. Max:The Book of Lost Things takes place in early 1900s. Almost thirteen year old Max Starling is the son of theatrical parents. Max parents are still away, but Max suspects they may be in danger. While trying to figure out his parent's situation, he continues his job as a solutioneer. The mayor hires him to discover who is setting fires around the city. The same characters are present from the first book with a few new ones.

ILLUSTRATIONS: There are detailed and lovely
Iowa City Public Library
Mister Max: The Book of Secrets is the recently released second title in the trilogy, which follows Max on his most important case yet. The problems are bigger and more complex, but Max is sure he can handle them. Fires have been springing up in small businesses, but no one will talk to the police, and with a visit from the Royal family approaching, the Mayor is desperate stop the fires without a fuss. Enter Mister Max and his ability to get people talking without knowing who they are really tal ...more
Lorie Bonapfel
Feb 13, 2015 Lorie Bonapfel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mister Max, the “solutioneer”, is back for his second adventure as he further unravels the mystery of his parent’s disappearance while solving problems anonymously for his fellow citizens of the fictional Queensbridge. Twelve year old Max is so fully into his problem solving that he accepts a major case from the Mayor in order to find out who is setting fires and vandalizing the small businesses of the town and why the shop owners do not want the police involved. Will Max discover more about his ...more
Nov 06, 2015 Yapha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children-s, mystery
This second Mister Max book picks up right where the first one left off. It does not go into much detail about the events in the first book that put him into this situation, so it is important to read the books in order. Mister Max, the Solutioneer, is hard at work in this book. With the help of Pia, Ari, and his Grammie, he solves a variety of cases (or jobs, as he would correct) around town. They range from the very small, to a large case that has the mayor and the police baffled. All of the s ...more
Sep 06, 2015 Krystianna rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
**Thank you to Penguin Random House for sending me a copy of this to review!**

After reading The Book of Lost Things, I immediately started reading The Book of Secrets. I was so happy to be thrown back into the wonderful world of Mister Max and his wonderful adventures.

In book two, Max is still on the hunt to find out where his parents are. He's still just as independent, though now he has his own assistant who's also his friend. Max is asked by the mayor for help, which is a really big deal. O
Rick Stuckwisch
Mar 15, 2015 Rick Stuckwisch rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Quite a good book, and a solid continuation of the series. There's at least one more installment to come - Mister Max and the Book of Kings -- and I suspect that it may be the conclusion to what will be a trilogy. We'll have to see. Cynthia Voigt is a good author. Her characters are well developed and interesting, her story lines are complex but carefully crafted and coordinated. As mentioned in commenting on the first book in this series, I'd locate this series in the same groove as the Mysteri ...more
Jessalyn King
Mar 11, 2015 Jessalyn King rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 9-12, audio
This was a decent sequel (although it took some thinking to remember things from the first one... I wish authors would include a detailed synopsis of previous books for their readers). I liked that he finally had people to confide in and that he let people help him. What kind of was weird was the pacing. It seemed almost like it was two books. The really exciting story arc wrapped up about 2/3 of the way through, and the last third was mostly setup for the third book... A bit strange. So I defin ...more
Mar 23, 2016 Sandy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, children-s
Voigt continues the adventures of Max Starling, the Solutioneer. Max has made friends - Ari, his boarder and math tutor, Pia, who becomes his assistant, Joaquin, his art teacher and more. He has also made a reputation for himself as a Solutioneer and the mayor comes asking him for help. The disappearance of his parents has become partially solved, Max knows where they are but doesn't know how they got there or why they are there. He and his grandmother have determined that his parents are in tro ...more
Amy Bradley
Jun 25, 2016 Amy Bradley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Even better than the first! Max's cases get more serious when the mayor asks to meet him. A rash of fires at small shops in Old Town, with none of the shop owners complaining, right before the King's visit puts Max on the case. Meanwhile, news of his parents arrive, in a coded letter.

Perseverance is a major theme, as well as tackling a puzzle or conundrum from multiple different angles. Max and his friends are a terribly interesting bunch, very personable and a delight to read about.
Nov 14, 2014 Toni rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: childrens
I just love Mister Max. He is really a twelve year old boy who is hiding big secrets, but he puts himself forward as a "Soluntioneer" someone who finds out things and solves problems. No one can guess his true age because of his experience in the theater and all of the costumes at his disposal. This is the second in what will be at least a trilogy.

The story is fun, sweet, and adventurous all at the same time, with some fun characters.
Teresa Osgood
Jun 30, 2015 Teresa Osgood rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mister Max is back with clever solutions to some tough problems. While he strives to maintain his independence, he finds that he needs more than a little help from his talented friends. With my professional training, I could tell him that Interdependence is higher on the Maturity Continuum than Independence, but I think he'll figure it out soon. He really can't do the next big job on his own.
Jenni Frencham
Dec 05, 2014 Jenni Frencham rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: middle-grade, mystery
The book itself: 4/5
The audiobook narration: 1/5

Audiobooks can live or die based on a narrator, and the narrator for this one decided that all female characters must sound exactly alike. It was really disappointing, because he depicted the fish lady, who talks really fast and doesn't let anyone get a word in edgewise, really well, but then ALL the female characters ended up sounding like the fish lady. Sigh.
I found this a bit slower going for me than the first novel in the series. That may be because there's a growing cast of characters and the challenges that Max was facing were, perhaps, more complicated and thus too more time to find a solution for.

But the ending was wonderful how it all came together and (view spoiler)
Dec 24, 2015 Tressa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mister Max: The Book of Secrets had great narration. I’d still love to visit Queensbridge and the surrounding areas. This was a wonderful and immersive tale. Even though most of the plot was wrapped up, the ending felt sudden. It felt sudden because I wanted the story to continue and I wasn’t ready to leave the story.
Nov 14, 2014 Monique rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Just as good as the first one, a little slow in the beginning, but by the end, I'm just looking for the next one. :) :) :) :) :)

I love the intricate stories, how two or three plots submerge and weave an addicting and well-crafted tale of a young boy named Max. The only problem: He's 12, yet some take him to be a man at times depending. I just wish the age was a little more believable for someone to take him as one in his twenties or thirties. I imagine while reading that he's like 14 or 15.
Entirely enjoyable, tho most definitely a 'middle book', standing between the equal charming first and the followup to come. I especially enjoy how the author describes Max in his various disguises as he re-creates theatrical characters he's played onstage with his (now missing) parents.
Dec 08, 2014 Patty rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction-juv
I really enjoy this series. This book moves us closer to what is going on with Max's parents as well as gives Max more than enough to think about while he is trying to figure out what to do. This one just came out and I am more than ready for the next one in the series!
A sequel to Mister Max Book of Secrets. Max finds peril in one of his jobs, gets a cryptic letter from his missing parents and learns that even a smart independent 12 year old needs friends, family and confidants. Heartwarming. I am looking forward to the next installment.
Jan 10, 2015 Jeana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Very nice read.

It really seemed to take everything I loved about the first book and build on it. The world just has such a classically elegant feel, and I found myself getting lost in the way things were described with such detail. And it's these little details, that seem meaningless at the time, that weave back around later and pull the sub plots together into a whole.

All the characters were vivid and felt needed. In fact even someone with as simple a role as a sales clerk or cafe owner that o
Beth Anne
Nov 09, 2014 Beth Anne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-aloud, 2014
Read aloud with Martin. This is shaping up to be a fantastic series. Martin thought this one was better than the first, but I liked that there were more hidden parts of the plot in the first. I figured out one big part before the main character and before Martin in this one as well. Really well written, exciting and interesting, and it's going to be a LONG wait for the next book!
Ivy Griffiths
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I couldn't put it down it was so good! It mixed surprises, suspension, and puzzles to make an exciting second book to the Mister Max series. I would recommend this book to middle schoolers through adulthood.
Fun continuation of the series as Max builds his team. I grew up reading Cynthia Voight's novels. While her characters are always unique, there are aspects of Max and his grandmother that recall other beloved characters. I've read most of her other books multiple times, so it's fun to read this series for the first time and have it feel both new and familiar.
Cecilia Rodriguez
Max has established himself as a Solutioneer. He is hired by the Mayor of Queensbridge to investigate a rash of vandalism and arson.
The subplot, deals with the mysterious disappearance of Max's parents and coded letters.
Mina Khan
3.5 actually

This wasn't as good as the first one, but still very enjoyable. I think we see Max maturing more in this one and Ari also coming into his own...definitely got me wanting to read the next one.
Oct 05, 2015 Tabs rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Max's adventures continue the story drags on in some place like the description of the soccer match and max at the theater.

Book mainly about Max the other characters barely registered.
Charlou Lunsford
Apr 07, 2015 Charlou Lunsford rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: j, mystery, middle-grade
Mister Max is still playing the part of a Solutioneer, a solver of problems,while actually being a 12 year old boy with missing parents. Quite as much fun as the first.
Feb 02, 2016 Karen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is good enough, and the writing is solid enough, but this does not make an especially interesting stand-alone book.
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Cynthia Voigt is an American author of books for young adults dealing with various topics such as adventure, mystery, racism and child abuse.

Angus and Sadie: the Sequoyah Book Award (given by readers in Oklahoma), 2008
The Katahdin Award, for lifetime achievement, 2003
The Anne V. Zarrow Award, for lifetime achievement, 2003
The Margaret Edwards Award, for a body of work, 1995
Jackaroo: Ratte
More about Cynthia Voigt...

Other Books in the Series

Mister Max (3 books)
  • The Book of Lost Things (Mister Max #1)
  • The Book of Kings (Mister Max, #3)

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“Ideas, he knew from experience, arrived in their own good time, dressed exactly the way they wanted to be and saying only as much as they felt like.” 1 likes
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