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The Monkey’s Secret

Gennifer Choldenko
"A segregated town, a hidden boy, a courageous girl - and a mystery in desperate need of solving"
The Monkey’s Secret – picture

A segregated town, a hidden boy, a courageous girl – and a mystery in desperate need of solving.

San Francisco, 1900. Thirteen-year-old Lizzy Kennedy is not like the other girls in her town. She’d much rather be helping her doctor father with his patients than be stuck in frilly dresses and learn how to dance – but unfortunately for her, society (and her Aunt Hortense) has other ideas about what is ‘proper’ for a young lady. This includes not poking your nose in other’s people’s business – but then Jing, their beloved housekeeper, gets stuck in the Chinatown quarantine. Fear rules San Francisco – fear of the Chinese, and mostly fear of the plague rumours that circle them. Lizzie knows she has to help Jing, whatever the warnings. But what she doesn’t expect to find is a strange boy hiding in Jing’s room.

The boy is called Noah. He says he’s Jing’s son – although Lizzie’s never heard of him – and although he’s escaped the quarantine, he can’t risk leaving the house in case he gets rounded-up too. Lizzie wants to investigate, but it seems her questions only get people riled up. Is there really plague in San Francisco? What have the Chinese got to do with it? Just what or who is the mysterious ‘monkey’ – and what has his secret got to do with anything? Lizzie will have to use all of her courage, instinct and cleverness to unravel the mystery of the monkey’s secret, save Jing, Noah and Chinatown – and maybe even her change her own destiny.

Publication Date: Thu 6 Aug 2015
ISBN Paperback: 9781471403521
ISBN Ebook: 9781471403538

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Gennifer Choldenko

Gennifer Choldenko was born in Santa Monica, California, and was the youngest of four kids, all of whom had big mouths. The only sibling who did not have the trademark Johnson big mouth was Gennifer's sister, Gina, who had Autism. Her parents worked very hard to try to figure out how to help Gina, but, as Gennifer puts it: "being the parent of a child with severe Autism is like riding a unicycle in an earthquake."

Since she was the youngest, Gennifer spent a lot of time by herself making up words, stories, songs, and jokes, none of which made a lot of sense. After graduating from Brandeis University with a degree in English, she went to work in advertising, but stopped after realising that all of her work was beginning to sound like the that of a big mouth twelve-year-old... At which point she went to Art School, but instead of getting her portfolio together, she wrote her first novel (she does her best work when she's supposed to be doing something else). Follow Gennifer at www.choldenko.com or on Twitter: @choldenko TEST