Review: The Artsy Mistake Mystery

Title: The Artsy Mistake Mystery
Author: Sylvia McNicoll
Genre: Middle Grade
Publisher: Dundurn
Source: NetGalley
Release Date: August 29, 2017
Rating: ★★★★

Goodreads Synopsis:

They say he’s been stealing art. But is Attila being framed?

Outdoor art is disappearing all over the neighbourhood! From elaborate Halloween decorations to the Stream of Dreams fish display across the fence at Stephen and Renée’s school, it seems no art is safe. Renée’s brother, Attila, has been cursing those model fish since he first had to make them as part of his community service. So everyone thinks Attila is behind it when they disappear. But, grumpy teen though he is, Attila can do no wrong in Renée’s eyes, so she enlists Stephen’s help to catch the real criminal.


This was a really cute story. It takes place in Burlington, about an hour south of Toronto. I’ve never read a story set there, so that was really different for me.

I liked how the dog walking was so prominent in the story. It shows Stephen and Renee working and earning money, which will make them well rounded kids. We also see some of the challenges they face, when Stephen is reported to Animal Control.

Mistakes are a big part in this book. The chapters are divided between the mistakes that Stephen notices him and other people making throughout the day. Sometimes he realizes something was a mistake after it’s happened and it’s too late to change it. This story demonstrates that everyone makes mistakes, and that’s okay.

This was a clever mystery. Many pieces of art disappear from the neighbourhood. There isn’t one obvious culprit, since there are multiple victims.

This is a great Canadian book for middle grade readers.


Author: jilljemmett

Jill lives in Toronto, Canada. She has studied English, Creative Writing, and Publishing. Jill is the creator and content producer of Jill’s Book Blog, where she has published a blog post every day for the last four years, including 5-7 book reviews a week. She can usually be found with her nose in a book.

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