Masterpiece by Kelly Murphy & Elise Broach

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Synopsis

Marvin lives with his family under the kitchen sink in the Pompadays' apartment. He is very much a beetle. James Pompaday lives with his family in New York City. He is very much an eleven-year-old boy.After James gets a pen-and-ink set for his birthday, Marvin surprises him by creating an elaborate miniature drawing. James gets all the credit for the picture and before these unlikely friends know it they are caught up in a staged art heist at the Metropolitan Museum of Art that could help recover a famous drawing by Albrecht Dürer. But James can't go through with the plan without Marvin's help. And that's where things get really complicated (and interesting!). This fast-paced mystery will have young readers on the edge of their seats as they root for boy and beetle.

In Shakespeare's Secret Elise Broach showed her keen ability to weave storytelling with history and suspense, and Masterpiece is yet another example of her talent. This time around it's an irresistible miniature world, fascinating art history, all wrapped up in a special friendship-- something for everyone to enjoy.

Masterpiece is a 2009 Bank Street - Best Children's Book of the Year.

 

About Kelly Murphy & Elise Broach

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Elise Broach is the New York Times bestselling author of books for children and young adults, including Desert Crossing, Masterpiece, and Shakespeare's Secret, as well as several picture books. Her books have been selected as ALA notable books, Junior Library Guild selections, an E. B. White Read Aloud Award, and nominated for an Edgar Award, among other distinctions. Ms. Broach holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in history from Yale University. She was born in Georgia and lives in the woods of rural Connecticut, walking distance from three farms, a library, a post office and two country stores. Antonio Javier Caparo has illustrated many books for children, including the Magic Thief series and The Young Reader's Shakespeare: A Midsummer Night's Dream. He lives in Montreal, Canada.
 
Published March 30, 2010 by Square Fish. 320 pages
Genres: Humor & Entertainment, Nature & Wildlife, Children's Books, Action & Adventure, Literature & Fiction, History. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Masterpiece

Kirkus Reviews

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The web further tangles when the Metropolitan Museum of Art enlists James to help catch a thief by forging a miniature in the style of Renaissance artist Albrecht Dürer.

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The New York Times

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When a beetle named Marvin sneaks out from behind the kitchen wall to draw a picture for James, a lonely boy, he plunges both of them into the Manhattan art world.

Mar 15 2009 | Read Full Review of Masterpiece

Publishers Weekly

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before long a curator is asking James to forge a Dürer miniature of Fortitude as part of an elaborate plan to catch an art thief (can a tiny virtue defeat big lies?).

Aug 25 2008 | Read Full Review of Masterpiece

Teen Ink

Teen Ink has 2 forums for you to choose from:.

Jul 10 2015 | Read Full Review of Masterpiece

Christian Science Monitor

He’s the heroic beetle at the center of Masterpiece, Elise Broach’s new mystery, and if you’re squirming at the combination of “heroic” and “beetle” then get a load of Marvin’s talent.

Nov 24 2008 | Read Full Review of Masterpiece

The Bookbag

Once James opens out in front of our eyes as another main hero, and he and Marvin can interact, we settle into a very winsome and engaging story of surprising adventures for the beetle, educative art lessons for James, and many scrapes when the talent gets known by others.

Mar 01 2010 | Read Full Review of Masterpiece

Common Sense Media

When James' artist father gives him a pen-and-ink set, Marvin -- who can understand but not speak English -- discovers a talent for art, and makes a tiny, detailed drawing for James, which everyone assumes James did.

Sep 01 2008 | Read Full Review of Masterpiece

Story Snoops

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Jul 10 2015 | Read Full Review of Masterpiece

https://www.commonsensemedia.org

When James' artist father gives him a pen-and-ink set, Marvin -- who can understand but not speak English -- discovers a talent for art, and makes a tiny, detailed drawing for James, which everyone assumes James did.

Jul 10 2015 | Read Full Review of Masterpiece

Shelf Awareness

Marvin uses his two front legs to make an intricate drawing of the scene outside the boy’s window, and its superior quality attracts a great deal of attention, not only from James (who immediately befriends the talented beetle), but also from the boy’s keen-eyed mother, his stepfather, and also J...

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Abby the Librarian

By day, youth librarian in Southern Indiana.

Jan 08 2009 | Read Full Review of Masterpiece

Reader Rating for Masterpiece
89%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 142 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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