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Sherlock Sam and the Ghostly Moans in Fort Canning - Book Review

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by Mellie M (subscribe)
Yogi, Foodie, Editor and Writer. I blog/edit at
Published March 22nd 2013
Boy and trusty robot sidekick investigates a mystery
Sherlock Sam Book 2
Sherlock Sam and the Ghostly Moans in Fort Canning

Following the successful Sherlock Sam and the Missing Heirloom in Katong, the husband and wife writing team A J Low (made up of former New Yorker Adan Jimenez and Singaporean Felicia Low) returns with another Sherlock Sam adventure set in one of Singapore's best loved historical spots - Fort Canning Hill.

If you know your Singaporean history, Fort Canning was used as an operational planning area during World War 2. It was also a place where some people were laid to rest.

Singapore's greatest kid detective Samuel Tan Cher Lock (aka Sherlock Sam), his trusty robot Watson and friends are on a school excursion when they stumbled on a sally port where there is some ghostly moaning. Sherlock Sam, like his namesake, does not believe in the existence of ghosts without science. And he investigates with his engineer/scientist father, along with Watson.

This is the second book in the Sherlock Sam series and I found it to be funny and witty. While the characters are stereotypical, I found them to be likeable. The formula used by A J Low is perfect. There is a boy and his robot, a bossy elder sister, a pretty and popular girl at school who is also a bit of a bully, an intelligent and grounded friend... and a ghostly mystery. It's as if all the boxes of what children like to read are all checked off.

The locations that A J Low described are befitting its real locales, complete with the available foods. Selegie soybean shop serving tau huey (soybean curd) and you char kuey (fried dough sticks)? The display of local knowledge is a clear show of research work done by the writers.

Watson carrying Sherlock Sam and his dad - running away from a ghostly sound

Finally, the illustrations by drewscape add extra charm to the book. I had found myself chuckling at some of the pictures.

adan and sherlock sam
Sherlock Sam, his dad and Adan Jimenez - Art imitating life?

Even as an adult, I greatly enjoyed reading this book. I look forward to the next Sherlock Sam book.
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