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*Crossing Cadogan Bay: The Secret of the Keepers* by J.M. Mangano- young readers fantasy book review
Crossing Cadogan Bay: The Secret of the Keepers
by J.M. Mangano
Ages 9-12 224 pages Writer's Showcase Press June 2002 Paperback    

J.M. Mangano has created a captivating story revolving around a boy who suddenly finds himself an orphan. Although he doesn’t miss his father after years of neglect and emotional abuse, he still feels lost and at odds. A mysterious grandfather turns up, and he moves to an immense manor house in the country. The story takes off like a shot from here, so reader - hold on.

Monty finds himself embroiled in events that make no sense and are somehow tied to his parents. Paralleling Monty’s story is one set in the late '30s, both in England and in Germany. Eventually these stories will collide, but the way in which they do is completely unexpected. Some of Monty’s questions about himself and his grandfather will be answered, but others take their place. Who was his mother? Why did his father hate Monty so much? Where does Nazi Germany fit in?

The story occurs around the Cadogan Bay, where the manor house is located. Monty finds a friend and playmate there, Frankie Graham, who has an unusual gift. She encourages him to look for answers, leading him into adventure before he even realizes what is happening. Mysterious voices, a hidden cottage, and a boat ride into mist leading to an unimaginable ending: this story has what it takes to be entertaining. Appropriate for all ages, Mangano's book is enjoyable and at times unpredictable. I hope to meet Monty in a second book set on Cadogan Bay and eagerly await Mangano’s next installment.

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