From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by Colleen G. (1-26-12)

Book Review

From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler

Book Author: E. L. Konigsburg

Book Review by: Colleen Gold

Genre: Fiction

Have you ever wanted to run away?  Claudia does in From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler.  It is an adventurous tale by E. L. Konigsburg.  Claudia wants to be different.  So, she runs away.  Her brother tags along.  When she comes home she is different.  She has a secret so big, she can’t tell it for years!  

Claudia and Jamie Kincaid are two brave siblings who run away from home and live secretly in the Metropolitan Museum of art and Sculpture in New York City.  When they get there, they discover a mystery even experts can’t solve!  So, they visit Mrs. Frankweiler in Connecticut.  She gives them the answer to the mystery in a way, even though they have to wait a few years for it!  Was it Michelangelo who sculpted Angel, or not?  You’ll have to find out for yourself!

Claudia Kincaid is daring.  She is adventurous and tough to be with in her brother’s point of view.  She wants to be treated with more respect, seeing that she is the oldest (and only girl) child over three brothers.  If she had to choose a favorite brother, it would have to be Jamie.  Claudia is calm and courageous.  She is good at planning and she is very smart for a twelve year old.  She’s a big money-spender, but a good leader.

Jamie Kincaid (whose real name is James) is a good boy, even though he gambles and cheats at cards.  He cheats his best friend Bruce into giving him money every Friday after a week of playing war on the school bus.  Jamie is very curious and always asks how much things cost.  He is annoying (in the eyes of his sister) but very good at handling money.  He is excited about most things in his life, and he is smart for a third grader.

Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler is very rich, old, and frail, but strong on the inside, and friendly.  She’s courageous, and happy to let the children find the secrets by themselves in her secret files.  In the years of her youth, she traveled the world and collected art.  She has always wanted to be a mother and now, after they spent the night at her huge mansion, she seems to have a special bonding with the two runaway Kincaids.

I would recommend this book to anyone from ages 7 to 12, since it’s based on a 7 and 12 year old.  From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler inspires kids to learn by showing how fun learning can be.  

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