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Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief (Sammy Keyes #1)

3.96 of 5 stars 3.96  ·  rating details  ·  3,189 ratings  ·  310 reviews
With this debut book of a new mystery series, Wendelin Van Draanen establishes Samantha Keyes as a crime fighter to watch. Though, actually, the book opens with Sammy watching...a crime in progress. And when theman with the wad of cash in one hand and the open purse in the other catches Sammy watching him, the chase is on--but is Sammy on the trail of the thief, or is he o ...more
ebook, 0 pages
Published September 9th 2003 by Yearling Books (first published April 14th 1998)
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Thirteen-year-old Sammy, who lives illegally at her grandmother’s “seniors only” apartment sees a crime committed while she’s looking through her binoculars—and the thief sees her. Booktalk: Sammy Keyes’ life is already crazy. She’s living illegally with her grandma in a seniors-only apartment complex while her mother tries to find an acting job out in California. While looking through her binoculars at the “seedy hotel” across the road—when her grandma has specifically told her NOT to be she se ...more
Sarah BT
Sammy Keyes is a Nancy Drew for a new generation. She's smart, funny, and very sassy with lots of spunk. Sammy has a temper and she's not always going to follow the rules, but that's part of her charm. Sammy will let you know what she thinks!

There's more than just mystery in the story. Sammy has to deal with a school bully and she learns to stick up for herself. She also is living (illegally) with her grandmother since her mother left to become an actress and Sammy has to sneak through the apart
Edit: I just read some of the reviews and I'm a little disappointed. Sammy does tell a lie or two in the book, but let's be honest: didn't you tell a lie once in a while when you were a kid. And tell me a book in which the character was absolutely perfect that you still love to the day. Sammy's lying is what we call a flaw and it's part of what makes her such an interesting character. The thing that bugs me the most about the reviews I just read, however, is that those of you upset about her lyi ...more
Sammy Keyes mystery series, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways--well, I CAN'T because you are so WONDERFULLY AMAZING. I want to put every book in your whole dang series on my favorites shelf, but I know I shouldn't because that would be excessive. But here are just a few of the things I love about you:

I love how Sammy, 12 year-old solver of small town crimes, never wastes time worrying about how pretty or thin she is, despite being in the high-peer-pressure world of middle school. Her app
I cruised through this book and read it in a couple hours so I could help Audrey (8) with her book report. She had to read a mystery for the month of October. This was a perfect mystery. Not to hard to decipher, but challenging enough. The clue to who the bad guy was was dropped pretty early on, and I can't say if I would have picked it up or not because Audrey told me who the thief was before I read it.
Anyway, the only thing that bothered me in the book was all the smoking. The main character w
All of the Sammy Keyes books are excellent. This is the spunkiest 13 year I've come across and I've enjoyed reading about her middle school problems, the friendships she makes with all kinds of people, the mysteries that are sometimes quite scary that she takes head on, etc. I've had to read late into the night because I can't put these books down. It is important to read them in order as her character grows and the storyline progresses. Language is smart, action is fast, characters are great.
Camy Smith
Sammy Keyes and the Hotel thief is book i would definately recommend for readers who love mysteries and good laugh. This story is about a 7th grade girl who lives with her "gram" in an elderly complex, when she really isnt suppose to. One day, Sammy was looking from her grandma's window. And she saw something very strange. It seemed to be a somewhat elderly man digging through a womens purse in a hotel room across the street. Throughout the story you learn how smart Sammy is. Towards the end, Sa ...more
4.5 This was So great!! Loved the characters, especially Sammy, who is my favorite character of all time, and Marissa and Grams!! Such a great mystery and the writing style was great. Can't wait to re-read some more!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Raghav Batra
This book is very interesting because the person who you would not think is actually the person who is behind all the crime. Sammy Keyes is a girl who solves mysteries. As Sammy gets complaints from people in the hotel, that someone has been stealing their money, she goes on the search to find who it is. As the book goes on Sammy narrows the hotel thief down by getting certain clues. When she finds out who it is she is amazed at first, but then she understands and sees the robber in progress. Af ...more
Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief by Wendelin Van Draanen is about Sammy, a 7th grader who lives illegally with her grandmother. When Sammy sees a thief through her binoculars, she is thrown into a world of chaos and worry, while still having to cope with junior high. Sammy people watches, avoids the cops and enjoys plenty of double dynamos in this incredible novel.
Van Draanen has written a stunning novel. The book is written in such a way that I can visualize every chapter of it in my mind. The m
This is the first book about Sammy Keyes, and how she accidentally gets involved in the investigation of a robbery because she witnessed it through her telescope. This story highlights the struggle of witnessing something wrong being done, and choosing to find justice, especially when you didn't choose to witness the wrong-doing! The mystery in this book is page-turning and Sammy is relatable, so I believe this book would be a good addition to a classroom library.

Interest Level: 4-8
Reading Level
Shane Allen
Sammy Keyes is always getting into mischief. In this book she is looking out from her Gram's old folk's home and spying on people after she told her not to. She then finds a man ransacking a purse and it's later discovered that he has stolen $4,000! She is on a chase to find the thief and get the money in order to save the justice in the neighborhood. Sammy goes on a puzzling mysterious adventure once again as she unfolds the truth.

I recommend this book to all grades because the context is for e
I had never heard of this series until I went to a local bookstore in Greenville, SC for a boon signing. This series is usually intended for a younger audience, but I throughly enjoyed the book! After reading the book, I feel as if it's a book for any age. You audience would love it because of the 7th grade character, but it's entertaining enough for teenagers and adults alike. It's difficult not to fall in love with the curious protagonists. Sammy's the type of character you wish had have been ...more
Jan 21, 2008 Alyssa rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who loves mysteries!
great book, really cool
Title: Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief
Author: Draanen, Wendelin Van

Tired of the old fashion mystery books where it revels or gives hints in almost very end of the book? Well is time for a change, Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief
Is a young adult’s mystery novel written by Draanen, Wendelin Van. Sammy Keyes is a new detective in the town; her reckless, but friendly; crazy, but nice personalities will take you into a whole different kind of mysterious adventure!
In the Sammy Keyes series, this boo
I was afraid this was going to be an entrant in the (too) Cute and (too) Precocious Child Detective category, and while it came close and trots out some standard issue cliches in the MG/YA world, it did end up charming entertaining me and I have checked out another in the series.

The story is narrated in the first person by the Sammy Keyes of the title. She - yes, she -- is smart, humorous, mischievous, a tad sarcastic, a bit of a near loner. This could be the profile of dozens of other Child De
Another meh! Maybe walking up and down the shelves of the library and picking out books at random isn't working out so well for me. This is the first in a series of mystery books written for kids. I was really hoping it would be good because, now that I'm done with H Pot and Lemony, I need a new series in my life. Sadly, this one will not be it.

This book centered on a girl, Sammy. She is trying to figure out who stole some money from the hotel across the street from her grandma's senior residenc
Chris Murray
Samantha, “Sammy” Keyes is a feisty 13 year old who lives with her grandmother in an apartment designated for retirees only because her mom is off pursuing a Hollywood career. At home one day, a bored Samantha trains her binoculars on the world outside and witnesses a robbery in the hotel across the street. She can't call 911 because the authorities might discover that she is living with Gram. Instead, she waves at the thief. The burglar spots her right back, setting in motion a headlon
Claire Vanderlaan
This book is about a girl named Sammy Keyes. Her mother, Lana Keyes (or Lady Lana), abandoned her when she was 5 to her Grams. Lady Lana then left for Hollywood to become an actress. Sammy is now twelve, almost thirteen, and is starting seventh grade at William Rose Junior High, with her friends, Marissa and Dot, meeting her archenemy, Heather Acosta. Heather makes fun of Sammy's high-tops and then tries to get Marissa to give her money and sticks Sammy in the bottom with a pushpin. But suddenly ...more
Also Found On: A Book and A Record

If you’re looking for a great series for your middle grade reader that is a little bit more modern than The Boxcar Children (which are some of my favorites) and will appeal to both boys and girls, look no further than Sammy Keyes. I cannot recommend this series highly enough! Like an updated, spunkier version of Nancy Drew, Sammy wins you over on the first page. She is, by far, one of my most favorite protagonists in the world. She is so hilarious, fun, and rela
Samantha (Sammy) Keyes needs to live on the down low in her grandmother's government subsidized elderly person's residence on a city block. Her father, who knows, her mother, left her a year ago and is off looking for a big acting break in Hollywood. (Haven't we heard that one before?)
Needing to stay inside a lot has lead her to using her grandmother's binoculars to watch the comings and goings in the neighborhood. Then one day she spies a man taking money out of a woman's purse on the 4th floor
I Scream, You Scream: Lockwood & Co. Jonathan Stroud’s Lockwood and Co. Book 1: The Screaming Staircase is a great mix of mystery and ghost story. Boasting an opinionated and talented heroine, Lucy Carlyle, who could be Sammy Keyes British cousin, this story is set in a world where ghosts (called Visitors) have taken over the night and wrought havoc all over London. Of course, only children can see and therefore fight these Visitors. As the book opens, we find Lucy recounting her time at Loc ...more
Read this as a preview for our Page Turners Book Club and we will definitely do one from this series this year. What a great character and story. This is a series that began right after Sara was born and there was a time period where I really wasn't that engaged with much juvenile fiction (especially mysteries because that wasn't Jacob's thing) I had missed this series. Glad a colleague recommended it, because I want to read more in the series - not just for the book club's sake but for mine ...more
Kaite Janicki
Sep 15, 2013 Kaite Janicki rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: my peers
Recommended to Kaite by: my mom
Sammy Keyes and the hotel thief

By: Wendelin Van draanen

My free choice book was very entertaining and kept me wanting to pick up my book, or never put it down. Sammy the main character of my book was in to spying on the fancy hotel across the street from her apartment. One days she was looking into the window of the hotel named "heavenly hotel" and saw a man stealing money and jewlery from a hotel room and she looked away because she saw him look right at her...she was caught! When she looked bac
I decided to just sit down and re-read this book (and might re-read the whole series) because I used to absolutely loved these books as a kid. Well, I guess I still do! Sammy is funny, smart, and such an entertaining character. I love the writing, the witty humor, and the fun mystery. These books are wonderful for any age. I flew through this book in one sitting and it was awesome. Highly recommended for light, quick, fun read.
i first read this book on a family road trip when i was in high school. My eight yr old cousin had gotten it randomly for her book for the trip. She was having a hard time reading it as it was above her level, so my lil sis and i took turns reading it aloud to her. Sam (my lil sis) and I enjoyed the book so much we have avidly anticipated the release of each susequent book. Each book in a month in sammy's life in the seventh grade. she makes friends, enemies eventually meets a boy and that one t ...more
Abby Thorne
The Sammy Keyes series was one of my favorite series as a kid and I still enjoy them today. If you like mystery with fun, then Sammy Keyes is the series to read. My favorite part is Sammy herself. She is funny, smart-alecky, and has an attitude and trouble with authority. She is smart and always running into trouble in her good-old high tops. Listening to her thoughts and adventures is what makes the book fun. Love it!
Anastasia (Here There Be Books)
This is one of my favorite middle grade mystery series, and I kinda think it doesn’t get talked about enough. I don’t know WHY, either, because they’re really good books. The writing: excellent. The characters: layered and complex and amazing. The mysteries: not super complicated, but still interesting and (y’know) mysterious.

What hit me the most during this reread is how much Sammy is like a tiny Veronica Mars. The book series came out before the TV show, and I am seriously wondering whether th
With a lot of the kids' series, I usually read only the first book, just to get enough of a feel for the series so I can book talk it to kids at the library, but I plan to keep reading the Sammy Keyes series. This first book was smart, funny, clever and exciting. Wendelin Van Draanen has a good eye for character and does a great juggling act with many characters. Highly recommended.
The book i am reading right now is "Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief." I absolutely love this book because it is a mystery. i love mystery books because they get me curious and want me to read more so i can find out what is going to happen at the end. But back to the book, this book is about Sammy that uses his binoculars and spying around his block. But one day he saw a robber taking $4000 from a woman's purse. And the robber looked right at Sammy back. When Sammy went to the police station to ...more
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Van Draanen was born in Chicago, Illinois. One of her early influences was Dandelion Wine . According to the author, the book was "about the magic of growing up and [it] reminded me of all the wonderful mischief my brothers and I got into when we were young." Bradbury's work inspired Van Draanen to write How I Survived Being a Girl, which was published by HarperCollins in 1997. Other early influen ...more
More about Wendelin Van Draanen...
Flipped The Running Dream Runaway Sammy Keyes and the Sisters of Mercy (Sammy Keyes, #3) Sammy Keyes and the Skeleton Man (Sammy Keyes, #2)

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