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The Ghostwriter Secret: Brixton Brothers, Book 2 (The Brixton Brothers #2)

4.16  ·  Rating Details ·  515 Ratings  ·  84 Reviews
Steve Brixton is America’s next great kid detective (and now he has his own agency to prove it)….
When twelve-year-old detective Steve Brixton gets a call that the Fairview diamond has gone missing, there are only two things to do: grab his new business cards and take the case!

But Steve quickly learns there’s an even bigger mystery afoot.

MacArthur Bart, a.k.a. Steve’s he
Audio CD
Published October 12th 2010 by Listening Library (Audio) (first published 2010)
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Kate Willis
Jan 01, 2017 Kate Willis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, contemporary
How could anything compare to the clever and hilarious first installment of this series? This book almost didn't make five stars until the last few chapters. Serious suprises there. And then more suprises. And even more. The plot is as good as if Steven Moffat wrote a kids' book. The writing style was fantastic (and funny!) as always, and it was fun to see Dana getting in on the adventures. (view spoiler) I especially enjoyed that there were (view spoiler) ...more
Paul Willis
Jan 01, 2017 Paul Willis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Haha! Brilliant! Ace!
Elissa Schaeffer
Jan 16, 2014 Elissa Schaeffer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Steve Brixton is back with more adventures, more mysteries, more danger, and more trouble!

After the success of his first mystery, The Case of the Case of Mistaken Identity, Steve has opened his own detective agency, the Brixton Brothers' Detective Agency--even though Steve is an only child. (It just sounds better, okay!?) He gets a mysterious letter from Macarthur Bart, author of the Bailey Brothers books, Steve's favorites and his inspiration. Macarthur Bart is in trouble and he needs Steve's h
Aug 05, 2015 Dolly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: middle grade readers
This is the second book in the Brixton Brothers series by Mac Barnett. The story is an action-packed, fun, fast read and will likely appeal to grades 4-6.

I was highly distracted while reading this book and constantly put it down to read something else. I think I am beginning to tire of the silliness of the story, but I know our girls have really liked them. We have the next book, It Happened on a Train, and I'm sure I'll give it a try. But I'm glad the series is a short one.

interesting quote:

Excerpt from an interview with my son:

What did you think of this book?

M: Well I think that it's good, and the cover gives you a really good idea of how it is -- exciting, but also like kind of suspenseful. On the cover, you see them underwater in a pool with bullets coming down, and that is really suspenseful.
YNL: Because?
M: Because, well, I don't want to ruin anything if you haven't read the book...
YNL: But I have.
YNL: The bullets raini
Jul 20, 2010 Boni rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chapter-mg
LOVE this second installment of the Brixton Brothers series. Just as good as the first- funny, well-plotted and action-packed. Excellent!
Juan Pablo
Oct 27, 2016 Juan Pablo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Review 1:

There are two main characters in the realistic fiction novel The Brixton Brothers: The Ghostwriter Secret by Mac Barnett named Steve and Dana. Steve Brixton is a confident and daring boy who is very analytical about what goes on around him. He always tries to keep his head up because he always wants to solve his cases. Dana is a more mellow and slow going character who does not know as much about solving mysteries. But he accompanies Steve on his investigations and helps Steve when he
Sep 07, 2010 Melissa rated it really liked it
Recommended to Melissa by:
Shelves: 2010-reads
Steve Brixton is off on another sleuthing adventure in this second Brixton Brothers tale. Having achieved a sort of local celebrity after solving his first mystery, Steve has started an official Brixton Brothers Detective agency, never mind the fact that he is an only child and only employee of the agency. While working on his agency’s first official case, “The Missing Fairview Diamond”, Steve is contacted by his hero, MacArthur Bart, claiming that he has been kidnapped. Bart is the author of St ...more
Mar 05, 2014 Linda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This series is hilarious! Loosely based on the Hardy Boys series, there are lots of puns and similar names and circumstances. This is book #2.

Twelve year-old Steve Brixton, who has no siblings, formed The Brixton Brothers Detective Agency to model it after his favorite 58 book mystery series, the Bailey Brothers, written by MacArthur Bart. No new books have been written for 30 years. Steve gets a case concerning a missing diamond but he quickly solves it. Steve has written letters to his idol M
Jan 28, 2015 Beth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An intermediate chapter book, "Brixton Brothers: The Ghostwriter Secret" would appeal to 8-12 year olds or 3rd-6th graders. It is written at an AR level 4.5.

The student's interest inventory stated that if an author was writing a book just for him, he would like it to be a mystery. This intermediate novel combines the students interest in mysteries but also includes a style and humor that was popular in the Hardy Boys books. Drawing in elements of history, another interest of this student, The Br
Aug 22, 2011 Heidi rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Ages 8-12
Shelves: series, juv-mystery
Steve Brixton has recently opened his own business, the Brixton Brothers Detective Agency (despite the fact that he doesn't have any siblings) and receives a phone call from the richest man in Ocean Park, Victor Fairview, his first official client. Mr. Fairview has had a diamond stolen, one of the top three diamonds in the world, the Nichols Diamond. While working on this case, Steve receives a letter from his hero, MacArthur Bart, author of Steve's favorite series, "The Bailey Brothers Mysterie ...more
Jan 14, 2015 Justo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is absolutely worth reading and would keep you wanting to turn the page. This book is about a 12 year old kid, Steve, who has made his own detective agency. A billionaires multi-million dollar diamond has been stolen and no one knows how! The billionaire has heard of Steve and the previous work he has done, so he asks for his help! Steve is very smart and he solves the case and finds the diamond quickly. Steve gets paid and is recognized for his work. But he then receives a letter fro ...more
Miss Pippi the Librarian
Steve Brixton returns for another whirlwind detective adventure! With such a great success after solving The Case of the Case of Mistaken Identity, Steve receives a call for help when a rare red diamond is stolen. But the missing diamond is only the beginning of the true mystery! MacArthur Bart, author of the Bailey Brothers Mysteries series is missing! Steve is on the case with some his best chum, Dana.

Another mystery novel not to be missed! Arte Johnson returns for another marvelous Mac Barn
Jake V
Oct 27, 2010 Jake V rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The ghost writer secret I thought was a very good book. the book had some action and was a very good mystery book. I gave this book a four out of five because It was very good but not the best book I have ever read. This is a book for boys and I guess girls to. I would defintley read this book again. So if you need a good book that you want to read then read this super good book.

The book is about this boy that loves his favorite author, and he is visiting at a hotel right by his house. The aut
The Brixton Brothers series is absolutely fabulous. I loved this book and frequently found myself laughing out loud with the ridiculous situations. This will be more enjoyable for those who enjoy parodies, have a sense of humor, and have read a few detective or mystery stories. (The Hardy Boys, the Three Investigators, etc.) Steve is very smart, but is clearly living in the wrong era. He idolizes the Bailey Brothers, fictional detectives of possibly the 1950s or 1960s, calls his best friend "chu ...more
Jul 10, 2013 Diane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2013
If "Danger is the snack food of a true sleuth", Jack will never be hungry in this second Brixton Brothers novel. A stolen diamond, a kidnapped author, guns, warehouse fires and, worst of all, angry parents. Jack and Dana are up to their eyeballs in plot twists and dead ends as they try to piece together what's really happened to MacArthur Bart, famed author of The Bailey Brothers Mysteries. With no help from the police, including Rick, the police officer dating Jack's mom, the boys take matters ...more
Bobby Simic
Sep 03, 2011 Bobby Simic rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Brixton Brothers are back and only child Steve Brixton (think about it) is up to his sleuthing ways, this time involving the kidnapping of the author of his favorite book series, the Bailey Brothers Mysteries. Along with his unfortunately-named (at least for the character, not so much for the reader) best chum, Dana, Steve tries to figure out the whereabouts to his hero (and probably spirit-guide) while dodging bullets, checking into hotels, and driving his mom's boyfriend's truck over the G ...more
Apr 16, 2012 Marfita rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children-s
More adventure than you could shake a stick at - a rollicking send-up of detective story tropes! These stories can be enjoyed by the young (who read and believe like Steve Brixton) and old (who remember the outlandish adventure stories of their youth) alike.
Steve Brixton must rescue his hero, MacArthur Bart - author of his favorite detective series, and foil the "B" syndicate. His mother's boyfriend, the policeman Rick Elliot, is still a doofus. Steve's best friend and partner Dana ("I'm not a d
Nov 30, 2010 April rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobooks
I needed to read this to review it so an official review will come around sometime in the near future. The brief version is that this is a great audiobook! Very, very funny... a wry sense of humor that I love. The story is quick and suspenseful (as my 11 yr old niece put it..."I like the short chapters" hooray for honesty! Srsly there is no need to drag out a story if it is good!). I have not read the first book in the series but it wasn't necessary to enjoy book 2, but I now want to read #1, pr ...more
Feb 26, 2011 M. rated it liked it
Twelve year old Steve Brixton, avid reader of the Bailey Brothers mysteries, has set up his own detective agency. His first case in this book, that of a stolen diamond, is easily solved, but the next one involves the author of the Bailey Brothers series, MacArthur Bart, who has been kidnapped. With his trusty copy of the Bailey Brothers' Detective Handbook, Steve and his good chum Dana pursue the goons and evil doers while being shot at, kidnapped, and facing the insidious plots of the bad guys. ...more
Agus Siswoyo
Dec 05, 2011 Agus Siswoyo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is perhaps the most important part of the process. Make a list of potential writers, then get on the phone - or better yet, meet in person. You want to be able to converse easily with your Ghost Writer and express yourself freely. You want your writer to "get" you; to understand who you are as a person and what makes you tick. If a potential writer doesn't understand the points you are trying to make in conversation, he or she will not be able to represent you properly in your book. If conv ...more
These books are amusing, but totally ridiculous. After I finished the first book, my son read it and commented on the things the main character did that one shouldn't do (steal a police car, etc). Unfortunately, there is more of the same in book 2. So as long as you are not worried about your child imitating some ridiculous (and/or illegal) behavior, these books are an enjoyable and amusing read.
Jonathan Garcia
Feb 17, 2016 Jonathan Garcia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Steve got himself into big trouble once again. Steve a 12 year old detective who always loved MC. Arthur, that supposedly died in a car crash. Steve didn't think that was exactly true, so he tested his hunch, and it turned out to to be a good hunch, a hunch that made his world turn upside down. He later found himself caught himself with MC. Arthur, trapped in a cave. I'd recommend these type of books to people who are interested in crime and mystery books .
Jenn Estepp
it's pretty much on par with the first one, so if you liked the first you'll probably like this. i didn't, really - it's just not my cup of tea. maybe i'm too close to the source. as ridiculous as i know they are, i still love the old school nancy drew, hardy boys, dana girls, etc. but, even though it's not my cup of tea, the kids at my library seemed to like the first one, so i'm glad to have this for them.
Apr 25, 2010 Chris rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery, childrens
The Brixton Brothers Detective Agency is back, fully licensed and bonded (whatever that means). Steve and Dana solve jewel thefts, escape kidnappers, survive warehouse fires, and bust up crime syndicates.
My favorite part, though, is MacArthur Bart (clearly no connection to Mac Barnett), the author so unbelievably rich and successful that he spends all his time and wealth on trying not to become famous.
Kathy Miles
Jul 28, 2016 Kathy Miles rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Without really saying it, this series is a semi-spoof on the original Hardy Boys Mystery series. Plenty of humor along with the mystery as Mac Barnett's detective Steve Brixton sometimes bumbles through some seriously dangerous situations, all the while referring to his ever-present "Bailey Brothers' Detective Handbook". Pretty fun mystery/action/adventure for readers @ the 4th grade reading level.
Oct 02, 2011 Leah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: family
This is a perfect title for fans of old-fashioned mystery, the way I remember first reading it in Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys. Just when it seems like the bad guys have got the best of the kid detectives, they pull an ace out of their sleeve. The copy we read was printed with a large font and included occasional illustrations, which made it perfect for my son to read on his own, though it was more fun to read it together.
Aug 24, 2012 Andy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This 2nd title is just as much fun as the first one in this funny, breezy series. Rex's illustrations are perfect, as usual, and Barnett continues to mine comic gold from the Hardy Boys tradition - my favorite parts are the excerpts from the "Bailey Brothers Mysteries" - like #19, "The Strange Case of the Strangest Stranger."
Another brilliant book by Mac Barnett. This series has a great mix of adventure, mystery, and humour, and this fast-paced, exciting case gives Steve Brixton the chance to seriously flex his sleuthing muscles. This could be a fun one for a family read-a-loud, since parents who are familiar with the Hardy Boys will also get a kick out of the way Barnett parodies the genre.
Lots of my students ask for mysteries. Here is a good one for 6th graders and could be recommended for those who struggle with reading. Steve is a fun 12-yr-old detective solving big cases. Suspense, short chapters and all done by a San Francisco Bay Area author will make this a go-to series for my boys looking for mysteries.
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Born to non-farmers in a California farming community, Mac now lives near San Francisco. He's on the board of directors of 826LA, a nonprofit writing center for students in Los Angeles, and he founded the Echo Park Time Travel Mart, a convenience store for time travelers.
More about Mac Barnett...

Other Books in the Series

The Brixton Brothers (4 books)
  • The Case of the Case of Mistaken Identity (Brixton Brothers, #1)
  • It Happened on a Train (Brixton Brothers, #3)
  • Danger Goes Berserk (Brixton Brothers, #4)

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“Danger is the snack food of a true sleuth.” 4 likes
“Dana was what Steve called a "silent partner" in the Brixton Brothers Detective Agency. Being a silent partner meant that Dana didn't carry a business card, that his name didn't appear on the company letterhead, and he wanted nothing to do with the Brixton Brothers Detective Agency.” 3 likes
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