Brooke Shirts's Reviews > The Diamond of Drury Lane

The Diamond of Drury Lane by Julia Golding
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's review
Oct 09, 2008

it was amazing
bookshelves: books-read-in-2008
Read in August, 2008

Ah, so satisfying in so many ways!

Catherine "Cat" Royal is a foundling adopted by London's Drury Lane theater, circa the late 1700s. It's a position that lets her mingle with cast, crew, and audience members both high and low. When she overhears theater manager Mr. Sheridan saying how he is hiding a diamond in Drury Lane, her curiosity is piqued, although her discovery and subsequent protection of this diamond isn't exactly what anybody suspects.

Add to this some narrow escapes from street gangs, tea parties with aristocrats, phony robbery charges, an African-American violin prodigy with his own agenda (yes, you read that correctly) and a sweet lil' love story and you have one of the best children's mysteries that I've read in long these many years. For bonus points, there's a glossary of terms in the back explaining all the adorably roguish 18th-century slang.

I especially love the fact that Cat's transversing of various social classes is so plausible, and that the 18th-century mindset is so convincingly portrayed. Can't wait to read the sequel.
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