Someone’s Trapped, the next book in the Viking Club Mystery series, is now with the publisher. Chris, Rebecca, and Jaylon meet again to solve another a mystery while dealing with new personal struggles, this time in a summer soccer setting.
These three children seem like real people to me now, and it’s hard to remember that they came out of my imagination. But you’ve heard it before—a writer dreams up the characters and the plot and, somehow, the individuals take on lives and personalities of their own. Until I’m actually writing the dialogue, I’m never sure what is going to come out of the mouths of these three young people.
I didn’t actually plan for Jaylon to have the sense of humor that has surfaced, and didn’t realize what a great analyzer Chris would prove to be. Rebecca is a year older than Chris and two years older than Jaylon, but has more maturity at thirteen than what I expected. Writing about children—even imaginary children—as they experience life is very much like watching your own children grow up around you—endless surprises.
The Sports Plot Centers Around the Soccer Scene
Many children love sports in general, and if they play one sport, they are usually anxious to try others. It is not surprising that once summer arrives, our three hockey players join soccer teams. When school begins in the fall, they will be drawn to the short season of after-school basketball. Except for Rebecca. But I’m getting ahead of myself….
- Rebecca Has a Problem
Rebecca is at the center of the mystery in Someone’s Trapped because she has become a suspect in what is emerging as a string of thefts from her soccer team dressing room. She is frantic to prove her innocence and summons the Viking Club Detective Agency to help her solve the mystery: Who’s the thief? Is it someone on her team? Does someone outside the team have a key to the dressing room? Has a copy of the key been made? How can Rebecca’s reputation be saved?
- Chris Has a Problem
Chris, meanwhile, is facing his own summer dilemma. Having been the top player on his soccer team the previous year, he was proud of the honor of being selected to play with the older boys this season until he understands the role he has been assigned. He is being used as ammunition by the coaching staff to make the older boys work harder.
His teammates naturally resent being unfavorably compared to a younger player and take revenge in exactly the way you might expect: they won’t talk to Chris, pass the ball to him, or include him in anything they are doing.
Chris’s father is still posted in Afghanistan, and his mother is swamped with work and worry. Chris is committed to this nightmare team for the summer and it looks as though he is going to have to deal with the bullying problem on his own.
- Jaylon Has a Problem
Jaylon is enjoying a second season with his summer soccer team until he realizes his buddy is in some kind of predicament. Jaylon doesn’t know what’s wrong, but Patrick, their team captain, doesn’t seem to be trying very hard this year and is no longer outrunning and outscoring everyone as he did on last summer’s team. Even the coach is annoyed with his lack of effort.
Jaylon doesn’t understand or know what to do. Is Patrick sick? Is he injured? Is there a family problem? Has he lost interest in the team? Jaylon doesn’t want to ask questions that might embarrass his friend. Maybe he should just ignore what is happening like everyone else seems to be doing.
You can Help Us Explore More Themes
Let us know what problem you or your child encountered in the sports world in the comment section below. You have to use your real name and e-mail address, but I am the only one who receives that information and will conceal it and use any pen name you suggest when I post your comment.
If your child has read and enjoyed Something’s Missing, let me know here or at Amazon.com, or this Amazon.ca link, or at the Kindle Amazon.com site here or the Kindle Amazon.ca site at this link. You don’t have to use your own name on my site or on Amazon either – you’ll be asked if you want it used or not.
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