Truly Devious

Truly Devious

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Author: Maureen Johnson

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Ellingham Academy is the famous private school in Vermont for the brightest thinkers, inventors, and artists. It was founded in 1936 by a tycoon who wanted to make a wonderful place full or riddles, twisting pathways, and gardens. “A place,” he said, “where learning is a game.” Shortly after the school opened, his wife and daughter, Iris and Alice, were kidnapped. The only real clue was a mocking riddle listing methods of murder, signed with the frightening pseudonym “Truly, Devious.” It became one of the greatest unsolved crimes in history, a story of murder and mystery, one without a real conclusion—little Alice was never found.

True-crime aficionado Stevie Bell is set to begin her first year at Ellingham Academy, and she has an ambitious plan: She will solve this eighty-one-year-old cold case. That is, she will solve the case when she gets a grip on her demanding new school life and her housemates: the inventor, the novelist, the actor, the artist, and the jokester. But something strange is happening. Truly Devious makes a surprise return, and death revisits Ellingham Academy. The past has crawled out of its grave. Someone has gotten away with murder.