|Plot Summary of The Spice Box|
Berkley, May 2005, 21.95, 320 pp.
Irish Immigrant Bridget Henry has not had an easy life. Her family was forced to leave Ireland during the potato famine by their English landlord; her mother died on their ship while en route to America; and when they finally arrive, she and her younger sister have to survive on their own because their father disappears for months at a time. They both get sent to the orphanage where Bridget learns to be a cook and she lands a job at the home of wealthy department storeowner Isaac Gold.
On her first day on the job she finds the body of Mr. Gold's son in the dough box. He was shot twice in the chest and the police are so incompetent Mr. Gold decides to find his son's killer with Bridget's help. While they are chasing down every clue, Bridget is also looking to solve the mystery of her sister's disappearance, a quest that she can finally do now that she has Mr. Gold to help her.
The mouth-watering descriptions of the food that the chefs serve to the Gold family will make the reader very hungry. Bridget and Mr. Gold are a great pair of amateur sleuths and readers get a look at life in New York City during the Civil War. The division between upstairs and downstairs classes gives the reader a feel for what it was like to be a servant for the rich and powerful.
This synopsis report prepared by Harriet Klausner
|Chapter Analysis of The Spice Box|
Ratings are on a 1-10 scale (Low to High)
Composition of Book
descript. of violence and chases - 10%
Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives - 40%
Feelings, relationships, character bio/development - 40%
How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) - 10%
Tone of story
- suspenseful (sophisticated fear)
How difficult to spot villain?
- Very difficult--no foreshadowing/clues
Time/era of story:
- american civil war period
What % of story relates directly
to the mystery, not the subplot?
Kind of investigator
- amateur citizen investigator
Kid or adult book?
- Adult or Young Adult Book
Murder Mystery (killer unknown)
Accounts of torture and death?
- generic/vague references to death/punishment
Amount of dialog
- significantly more dialog than descript
Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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