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The Fossil Hunter of Sydney Mines

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4.06  ·  Rating details ·  32 ratings  ·  16 reviews
Thirteen-year-old Grace already has too much going on--grieving over her father's mysterious death, dealing with her distraught mother's erratic parenting, and evading her creepy nosy neighbor, Mr. Stuckless, just for starters. She and her friends Fred, Mai and Jeeter like to get away from it all by hunting for fossils near their secret hideaway, the abandoned mine they've ...more
Paperback, 169 pages
Published October 1st 2010 by Nimbus Publishing (CN) (first published July 30th 2008)
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4.06  · 
Rating details
 ·  32 ratings  ·  16 reviews


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Rebecca McNutt
Grace is definitely a loveable Cape Breton teen heroine and The Fossil Hunter of Sydney Mines is a great novel for any kid who's ever felt grief or felt like an outsider. An adventure novel taking place in Cape Breton's industrial small town of Sydney Mines, this book has complex character development, it's got just the right amount of humor, suspense and mystery. Filled with intriguing trivia about Cape Breton's vivid industrial 20th century and diverse main characters, this is definitely a nov ...more
Colleen
Sep 14, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Originally posted on http://lavenderlines.wordpress.com/

I forgot how much I loved a great middle grade mystery. When I was in grade six I got into Eric Wilson’s Tom and Liz Austin mysteries and started dreaming of being a writer when I grew up. Reading The Fossil Hunter of Sydney Mines took me back to those days and left me with a happy, glowy feeling.

This was a smart mystery. I mean, I’m 36 and there was stuff that I didn’t figure out. But once things were resolved, it was easy to look back and
...more
AH
Jun 20, 2010 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Children, early teens
Jason's (age 10) rating 5 stars, my rating (much older than Jason) 3 stars...so we averaged out at 4 stars

I won this book in the Goodreads first reads giveaway. The book arrived a few days ago and disappeared from my to-read pile. My 10 year old son found it. Fascinated by the subject matter - fossils and some sort of mystery, my son proceeded to read. And read. He did not put the book down. He then surprised me by saying that he finished the book. He liked the characters, the mystery, and that
...more
Edith
Jun 20, 2010 rated it really liked it
Won this book on goodreads. I liked it. I got fond of all the kids and I hope there will be other stories with them. Nice suspense too. In the end, I couldn't stop reading. And I like the environmental theme in the book. Great message for the kids.
Elizabeth
Jul 17, 2010 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jo Yhard
May 22, 2010 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
I am the author - please see below for a brief summary of the story...

Thirteen-year-old Grace already has too much going on -- grieving over her father’s mysterious death, dealing with her distraught mother’s erratic parenting, and evading her creepy nosy neighbour, Mr. Stuckless, just for starters. She and her friends Fred, Mai, and Jeeter like to get away from it all by hunting for fossils near their secret hideaway, the abandoned mine they've nicknamed The Black Hole. But when Grace receives
...more
Ann
Oct 17, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful, fast-paced mystery in the style of Nancy Drew (for those of you who read those), The Hardy Boys (if you're a boy), and most importantly, the awesome mystery chapter books of the 1980s (if you're me!)

Grace is a wonderful character - snarky, fearless but secretly very soft-hearted, especially about her father, whose disappearance (and presumed death) sets the story in motion.

She is backed up by a wonderful gang consisting of accident-prone Fred, extremely organize Mai, and the
...more
Jane Bates
Jul 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Great book, it was like Smog City meets Nancy Drew with its Cape Breton setting and themes of friendship, mystery and adventure.
Cait
Oct 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
Reading THE FOSSIL HUNTER OF SYDNEY MINES was like taking a huge step back into my childhood. I devoured this book now, and I would have then. With a solid mystery that had me reminiscing of Scooby-Doo and Nancy Drew (odd combination, I know, but that’s what I thought of!), I was drawn in by the plot and characters.

Grace, Jeeter, Fred and Mai are four friends who spend their spare time sneaking out to their hiding place in an abandoned mine and looking for fossils. Grace’s father, a fossil hunte
...more
Nicola Mansfield
Sep 24, 2010 rated it liked it
Reason for Reading: I liked the whole caves/fossil hunting angle of the mystery.

Grace's father died a mysterious death three months ago, her mother is taking it very hard, and last but not least her creepy neighbour appears to be watching Grace's every motion. So Grace spends most of her time with 3 friends fossil hunting (an activity her father was passionate about) out by the caves near abandoned mines and sinkholes. Grace soon turns her friends into detectives when she receives an anonymous n
...more
Leslie Preddy
Oct 11, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: grades 5-7
Jo Ann Yhard has built a page-turner akin to Nancy Drew. A mining company wanted to strip mine in the area, but Grace’s father didn’t agree due to the damage and loss it would do to the area’s irreplaceable fossils. Her father led the protests alongside Grace, but those stopped once her father disappeared and was presumed dead in an accident. Grace and her friends continued fossil hunting in his stead, searching for fossils in bootleg mining tunnels, even though it is dangerous and goes against ...more
Reading Vacation
Mar 09, 2011 rated it really liked it
REVIEW

Grace receives a note about her father’s recent death saying “It wasn’t an accident!” This note sets Grace and her friends on an adventure to solve the mystery. They use their fossil hunting skills to help them find clues.

Jo Ann Yhard writes a good mystery. Not all authors have that talent. She drops clues along the way, but does not make anything too obvious until the very end. Nice! There was all sorts of fossil hunting information, making that part of the story very realistic.

The real
...more
Annette
The Fossil Hunter of Sydney Mines by Jo Ann Yhard is an engaging mystery for middle grade readers. Thirteen-year old Grace is trying to solve the mystery of her father's death. Set in Nova Scotia, the story involves fossils, mining, and environmental issues that will be attractive for youth. [return][return]The story moves quickly and is filled with authentic interactions among characters. The young characters must deal with everyday problems from parents and school while finding clues and condu ...more
Sandra Stiles
Nov 25, 2010 rated it really liked it

The only thing Grace loves more than looking for fossils is her father. She can't believe he is gone. She doesn't understand how they could find his crashed vehicle but not his body. She also doesn't understand who put the strange message in her locker that read, "It wasn't an accident!" She and her friends set out to find out what really happened to her father, who was behind it and why. I love mysteries and this was a really good one. I am looking forward to handing this off to one of my stude
...more
PWRL
Apr 21, 2011 marked it as to-read
Shelves: 2011-new
O
Marcelina
Aug 16, 2010 rated it really liked it
I won this book with goodreads. I found it to be a very enjoyable read.
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“Repression. Her therapist, Dr. Solomon, loved the word. He'd say it slowly, letting it roll off his tongue. Sometimes he'd add a chin stroke for good measure. He always looked pleased when he did this, like he'd discovered the Caramilk secret or something.” 2 likes
“Jeeter?" Grace whispered into her walkie-talkie. "Are you awake?" She waited.

A few weeks ago, she and Jeeter had started chatting on their walkie-talkies late at night when she couldn't sleep. He always answered her call no matter how late it was.

"I'm here," his voice echoed back. "Trouble sleeping again?"

"Yeah."

"Another bad dream?"

"Uh-huh," she sniffed, unexpected tears flooding her eyes. My dad was calling for me, but I couldn't find him." She couldn't believe she'd said it. She'd never told anyone what she saw in her dreams. But Jeeter understood. He'd told her before that he had bad dreams too, since his mom had died.”
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