The fifth book in the Jane Wheel series is the best one yet. I had problems with Hollywood Stuff, the fourth book. Jane and Tim were out of their element when they went to California. But, Jane's reunion with her brother, and the return to Illinois, lead to old familiy secrets. Sharon Fiffer's Scary Stuff is the perfect autumn book.
Scary Stuff takes place in just a short period of time, over a weekend, but there are major changes in Jane's life. "Jane Wheel, accidental private eye, finder of dead bodies, spotter of antique forgeries, champion of the innocent." And, Jane is all of those in this book, beginning with champion of the innocent. It's Jane's brother, Michael, who sets everything in motion when he says he's been verbally attacked three times by men who misidentified him as a con man who sold them items over the Internet. Jane's trail leads her right back home to Illinois, where she uncovers theft, scams, and attempted murder. Along the way, she learns more about her mother, Nellie, a formidable figure who always scared her. Michael's problems lead to destructive family secrets. Throw in a woman who lives in a Halloween house, and it's Scary Stuff indeed.
Scary Stuff is the most revealing Jane Wheel mystery, as the reader learns more about Michael and Nellie. Jane is going to have to adapt to major changes in her life, but she knows she'll have the support of her family, and her friends, Tim Lowry and Bruce Oh. Any additional information will spoil the book for readers, but Jane is going to be tough enough to handle all the Scary Stuff life throws at her.
Sharon Fiffer's website is www.sharonfiffer.com
Scary Stuff by Sharon Fiffer. St. Martin's Minotaur, ©2009. ISBN 9780312387785 (hardcover), 304p.