I got this book in a clearance bundle of books that I bought to get a different book. I was trying to decide if I should read it or swap it and after seeing it was a Newberry Medal book I decided to read it. This was a very entertaining book.
In this book a number of people are offered the chance to move into an exclusive condo building. Shortly thereafter they receive notice that they have been listed in the will of the founder of Westing Paper Company. Only it is a bizarre will and rather than being straightforward it requires the potential heirs to engage themselves in a game to find out who murdered Mr. Westing. Thus the Westing Game begins.
This was a clever little book. It is not necessarily a quick read, since the reader must pay attention to all the little details in the book. Nonetheless I found myself enjoying this book immensely. It is a very classic mystery type of book and reads a bit like I would imagine a game of Clue would (if you could read a game).
There are many twists and many interesting characters. It was fun to try to figure out how all of the characters are tied to Mr. Westing. This was the type of book that you could either read and let it give you the answers or you could exercise your brain along the way and try to guess the answers before the book gives them to you.
Well written and very clever I thought this was a very interesting and entertaining book. It makes me want to check out more of Ellen Raskin's books.
Title: The Westing Game
Author: Ellen Raskin
Protagonist: the inhabitants of Sunset Towers
Setting: Westing, Wisconsin, on the shores of Lake Michigan
Young Adult Mystery
First Line: The sun sets in the west (just about everyone knows that), but Sunset Towers faced east.
The inhabitants of Sunset Towers are a mixed bag: a podiatrist, restaurateurs, a seamstress, a woman who works at the local soup kitchen, a delivery boy, a secretary,high school students, a woman who has delusions of grandeur.... For the most part, they enjoy living in their apartments with their views of Lake Michigan, until the day that Sam Westing is found dead in the nearby Westing mansion. They all receive letters explaining that they must come to the reading of Westing's will. When they appear, they are divided into teams, given clues and told that the team that finds out who murdered Sam Westing will inherit all his millions. A treasure hunt ensues with a thief and a bomber thrown in for good measure.
Although I was told that I, the reader, was the only one with all the clues, I didn't go out of my way to discover whodunit. I was more than content to go along for the ride. And a fun ride it was, too. The wordplay, humor, characterizations and complex mystery were all first rate. I can see why this book won the Newbery Medal!
I love this book. It's smart, engaging, and keeps you guessing until the very end. The reader has all the clues, so if you are a mystery fan, no matter what age, this book is for you. Don't read to fast or you might miss something important!
It's like Clue in a book.
This is one of my all time favourite books from childhood, and rereading it recently, I was happy to see how well it held up.
It is a can't put down mystery, the type that makes children ask to stay up for 'one more chapter'. I've given several copies to my nieces who just love it, so it is pretty timeless as well.
For young readers, I could not recommend more highly.
Great mystery!! If you love books that require thought and deduction, this one is a must!!