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Sammy Keyes and the Curse of Moustache Mary
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Sammy Keyes and the Curse of Moustache Mary (Sammy Keyes #5)

4.14  ·  Rating Details ·  1,800 Ratings  ·  67 Reviews
Now with a bright new paperback look, the fifth book in the middle-grade mystery series starring the Edgar Award-winning Sammy Keyes!
What's supposed to be a quiet weekend in the country turns into a crossroads adventure when Sammy and her friends meet Lucinda Huntley walking her 200-pound pig down the middle of the road. She tells them a true tale of the Wild West, a stor
Hardcover, 239 pages
Published February 1st 2001 by Perfection Learning (first published 2000)
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Jul 19, 2008 Sue rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Sue by: Meg
I LOVE all the Sammy Keyes books! There's some wisdom in each-good old common sense :-) and Sammy herself is such a good kid. Wendelin takes on some tough subjects kids may be exposed to and this book is no exception. Sammy finds out that some kids she knows are drinking and into drugs. This book shows that it's okay to not give into things to be cool and that good friends really do help each other and stick together.
Apr 19, 2008 Allison rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone
Shelves: favorites
I just looooove Casey he's the best! in every other one he's in too.
Feb 26, 2011 Shubhi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Casey is the sweetest thing to hit Earth!
Hmm. #5 in this series and it has HEAVY issues in it. If your child isn't in 7th or 8th grade I would skip this book. Sammy finds herself in over her head. All the confusing emotions involving boys and to top it off, some boys who are involved with drugs. But some are not.

So while the story about Mary and her moustache is right out of the wild west and the feuding families are still at it, the whole story is swirling and twirling around drugs and alcohol. The good news is that Sammy knows that's
I love the Sammy Keyes books and this one in particular. Sammy is smart and sassy, the mysteries are fun, and Van Draanen does a great job of getting middle grade right. A lot of times I find the characters in middle grade books to be too childish or too precocious, but Sammy thoughts and actions are realistic for a smart and tough girl her age (not to mention she is very funy).

For some reason, this installment sat with me enough that I have read it 3 times in the last decade. I really like how
Jun 19, 2009 Katy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love Sammy.

To date, I think this is my favorite of the series because the side characters were so great. Lucinda Huntley, her pig, and Moustache Mary just added so much to an already great series. I'm also interested in seeing where the Casey storyline ends up.
Sella Malin
i like these books- it's my favorite mystery series. the mysteries are really interesting, and sammy keyes is awesome. I love it when I find out who's the culprit a second before sammy does.
Bailee Walsh
Mar 20, 2017 Bailee Walsh rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-books
I picked this book up because I've been in the mood to read a mystery but nothing too heavy or complicated or something that would engross me for hours on end. So, going with a light mystery that wouldn't take me long to read, I decided I should continue with the Sammy Keyes books I have that I haven't read, yet. Mystery books have always been a main interest and growing up I loved Nancy Drew and Sammy Keyes. Fortunately they are books that even adults would enjoy!
At first I had, not like a HAR
Muhammad Salman
Nov 07, 2011 Muhammad Salman rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011-2012
A thrilling book about mystery. Kept me at the edge of my seat and never stop reading. Sammy and her friends are talking when a lady passes by and tells them a story about Moustache Mary. Her name is Lucinda Hartley. She is the great granddaughter of Mary. Lucinda asks help for the riddle that Mary left to find the gold.
A theme that is present throughout the whole book is for a successful sleuthing mission, it requires more than just one sleuth. Sammy cannot solve the mystery by herself. SHe wi
Jul 01, 2013 Garry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The second in this series I've read. A good mystery wrapped around some essential challenges of some challenging years...those awkward, awesome, oh-so-memorable years of 7th and 8th grade when some friends begin heading down different paths and it's hard to know which is the path you should be taking. At first I did not like what seemed like an out-of-place diversion to a High School party, but Van Draanen ties it all together in a compelling and realistic way. A series that could easily get too ...more
Laurie Gray
Aug 20, 2012 Laurie Gray rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The first book in this series (Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief) was on my daughter’s summer reading list between 4th and 5th grade. I read it with my daughter, and we were hooked. We read this book together as a family. Inquisitive and resourceful, Samantha (Sammy) Keyes makes a great tween protagonist. Be forewarned that there are some alcohol and drug references (marijuana, cocaine and meth) in this book which provided us with the opportunity to talk about these issues very frankly with our 10 ...more
Michele Wen
Jun 10, 2012 Michele Wen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
sammy keyes is an amazing series. i am massively in love with it. this certain book of the story is of how two didnt families didnt get along but one kid from each side fell in love. it's sort of like romeo and juliet but with a pioneer twist. sammy and her friends were staying at a friend's place and end up going into crazy adventures like running into a guy who may have stolen her skateboard and unraveling a mystery that has been misinterpreted. this book and this series is a must read!
Jul 26, 2015 Sharyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am listening to the audio books and they are really well done. I am an adult who enjoys Sammy Keyes. Read them awhile ago when my daughters were younger, now have found they are good car listening. This one is particularly interesting because it involves a meth lab and teens doing drugs. It has a very moral point. Sammy is a smart girl and she is great at figuring out what is going on. Everything is from the point of view of a 7th grader, and the reader does an excellent job.
Sep 01, 2015 Patrick rated it really liked it
Mine is a Yearling paperback, but with this cover only attributed to the hardback.

Good story. I love the lessons that Sammy is learning, but...the balance between the mystery du jour and the rest of Sammy's growing process was a little less focused. A few very different things intertwined, and it was a little weird. But it was awesome too. I loved the twist about Casey, and I'm really liking her relationship with Officer Borsch.
Natalie Goguen
May 13, 2016 Natalie Goguen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
New Year's Eve is approaching and since Sammy's grandmother is going to visit Sammy's mother in Hollywood, Sammy gets the chance to spend the long holiday weekend with her friends Marissa, Holly, and Dot at Dot's new house in the country. Ringing in the new year would be exciting enough, but in no time at all, Sammy's up to her high-tops in pigs, eccentric old ladies, 155-year-old family feuds, hidden gold, and females wearing moustaches.
Teri Gorleski
Sep 20, 2011 Teri Gorleski rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
This book is so exciting really you should read it. the author such a good job with the problem and solution she gives such good clues for Sammy,Marissa,Holly and Dot to follow. I think the front cover looks funny and fantastic! I hope you get the chance to read this fantastic book! No not this book the whole series yeah!
I figure this must be one of the first books to read in the Sammy Keyes series, but this is the last one I read. But I've requested more from the library. The reviews on the back of the hardcover of this book made me read it. I don't know why I delayed to write a review, though. I can't remember what the reviews said. But I'm pretty sure that the book followed through.
Jul 06, 2010 Louis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I learned that a girl found out that there was a person wearing a moustache and the person was called mary and the main character in this book was running away from mary because she doesnt want to get caught. I like this book because it was fun to read about people who are always solving a mystery and the book ends in a happy way
Anna Nowinski
Cute book for middle grade readers. I appreciated how it didn't pretend that drugs and alcohol don't exist. It treats the reader like real people. Would probably have been better if I was a) in the targeted age group and b) had read the previous books in the series
Jul 03, 2007 Hannah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chapterbooks
One of the many adventures of Sammy Keyes. Sammy is a teenage detective always looking for clues to solve a mystery. Find out all about the Curse of Moustache Mary, who she was, and why the house she lived in is cursed!
Jan 17, 2013 Dru rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: j-mystery
It's been a while since I've picked up some Sammy Keyes, and this one has a bit of everything: Sammy makes a new (older) friend, ghosts, family vendettas, a sleep over, Sammy's first house party, meth(!!!), a boy who likes Sammy, and a two hundred pound pig.
Since I've been reading these books out of order, I finally get to when Sammy and Casey meet for the first time and boy does their relationship change over time is all I can say. Another great Sammy Keyes story.
Nov 29, 2012 Heather rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Yeah, so I totally figured this mystery out early on in the book. Mostly because I (apparently) recognized the basic ingredients for meth before I was even thirteen. Go figure. (And sorry for the spoiler if you haven't read it already.)
Kaelyn Grant
Jan 09, 2013 Kaelyn Grant rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved the haunted story of the past included in the mystery of the current life. Also the Sammy faces a drinking party. The author captured the feel of teen partying and the poor choices some chose to make, and some chose to avoid.
May 30, 2010 Sarahsunshine13 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've only read two books in the Sammy Keyes series, Hotel Thief and this one, but I'd like to read the rest. Most books say on the back of them that it was a real page-turner, but these books have really only been page-turners for me in my whole life. I literally couldn't put it down!
Jun 09, 2014 Meredith rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery, audiobook, series
Drinking and drugs and meth labs, oh my. This would have to go on the 6th grade shelf ... although it's not the strongest of the series. Psycho Kitty is my favorite so far. Reading them out of order is slightly confusing in terms of friendship timelines.
Christy Willis
If you are needing to regroup and get in a better mood, this is the series to do it. The protagonist will take you on fun adventures and remind you what it is like to think like a middle schooler again.
Apr 17, 2013 Ashli rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-read
Feb 11, 2013 Reagan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013-favorites
WOW. So far my FAVORITE Sammy Keyes book!! The characters were SO great, and I loved how Sammy really seemed to mature in the New Year. I NEED MORE!!!
Jasmine Duong
Aug 21, 2015 Jasmine Duong rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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Wendelin Van Draanen has written more than thirty novels for young readers and teens. She is the author of the 18-book Edgar-winning Sammy Keyes series, and wrote Flipped which was named a Top 100 Children’s Novel for the 21st Century by SLJ, and became a Warner Brothers feature film with Rob Reiner directing. Her novel The Running Dream was awarded ALA’s Schneider Family Award for its portrayal o ...more
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Other Books in the Series

Sammy Keyes (1 - 10 of 18 books)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief
  • Sammy Keyes and the Skeleton Man (Sammy Keyes, #2)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Sisters of Mercy (Sammy Keyes, #3)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Runaway Elf (Sammy Keyes, #4)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Hollywood Mummy (Sammy Keyes, #6)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Search for Snake Eyes (Sammy Keyes, #7)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Art of Deception (Sammy Keyes, #8)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Psycho Kitty Queen (Sammy Keyes, #9)
  • Sammy Keyes And the Dead Giveaway (Sammy Keyes, #10)
  • Sammy Keyes and the Wild Things (Sammy Keyes, #11)

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