Google+ Reading Teen: Nobody's Secret by Michaela MacColl

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Nobody's Secret by Michaela MacColl

Nobody's Secret
by Michaela MacColl
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Chronicle Books (April 30, 2013)
Language: English
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One day, fifteen-year-old Emily Dickinson meets a mysterious, handsome young man. Surprisingly, he doesn't seem to know who she or her family is. And even more surprisingly, he playfully refuses to divulge his name. Emily enjoys her secret flirtation with Mr. "Nobody" until he turns up dead in her family's pond. She's stricken with guilt. Only Emily can discover who this enigmatic stranger was before he's condemned to be buried in an anonymous grave. Her investigation takes her deep into town secrets, blossoming romance, and deadly danger. Exquisitely written and meticulously researched, this novel celebrates Emily Dickinson's intellect and spunk in a page-turner of a book that will excite fans of mystery, romance, and poetry alike.

Nobody's Secret is a novel of historical fiction based on 15 year old Emily Dickinson, the famous poet of the 19th century.  Emily becomes entangled in the investigation of the death of an unknown young man.  She must keep her sleuthing secret from her disapproving mother and nosy sister.  The story takes place in puritanical New England where Emily challenges the accepted rules of behavior for young women of that time.  The story is very clearly and simply written.  The characters are well-developed and believable.  There is a build up of suspense as the solution of the mystery begins to become clear, but this is not a nail-biting, edge-of-your-seat, whodunit. 

I enjoyed reading this story as I like historical fiction.  I did make one big mistake by "Googling Emily Dickinson" before I finished the book.  The details of her actual life were not the sequel that I would have hoped to see.  I would recommend this book to all readers who like history but feel that it is geared to younger people.

  • Language:  Hell -1 time
  • Sexual Content:  None
  • Violence:  A man is murdered but there isn't any graphic descriptions.
  • Other:  A description of and discussion about a dead body.


  1. Oh this is historical fiction? For some reason I never noticed the out of date hat on the cover until I read that haah. I'm not huge on historicals but the ones I do like are like this--ones with a type of mystery. Which is why I,m a big fan of gothic novels. Anyways this sounds really good I'll have to keep an eye out for it! :)

  2. I love historicals! This sounds intriguing. :)

  3. It sounds pretty good to me! An anonymous guy found dead? Emily Dickinson plays detective? Cool.

  4. Sounds like a great read. I love historical fiction.

  5. Interesting book about a poet

  6. This book made me wonder if Dickinson had in fact solved a murder when she was a kid-alas, so not the case. I also really love it for introducing a lot of her poems to me. I tend to find poetry very intimidating but Dickinson's is pretty accessible.

  7. This sounds great. Always thought that Emily was an interesting poet. Her personal life was very fascinating!

  8. This sounds amazing, and I'm really glad that it's clean!

  9. From the review I could see this book going either way. I will have to read it and give it a chance.


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