Chasing Vermeer

Blue Balliett

Two sixth graders, Petra and Calder, have a mystery to solve. A thief has stolen a valuable Vermeer painting en route to Chicago, where they live. The two friends follow the trail of clues that the thief has put in the newspaper in an attempt to recover the painting. The book involves pentominoes (mathematical puzzle pieces), probability, and codes. This is a fun, interesting book reminiscent of From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. The follow-up to this book, The Wright 3, also includes pentominoes and codes, but adds a component of architecture as well. And the third book in the series, The Calder Game, again involves pentominoes and codes to solve the mystery, but this story involves mazes and the work of artist Alexander Calder.  


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