Ever since I watched the 2007 Emma Roberts movie ‘Nancy Drew’ last month, I’ve been desperate to read a detective story. Kitty Hawk definitely fit the bill! I loved the idea that Kitty was a girl flying solo around the world, an Amelia Earhart heroine. It was all so original and well thought out – I couldn’t believe how it all came together.
I have to admit that when I read this book, the suspense of the mystery was just added to by having my Kindle read the story aloud. It was great to get to listen to the adventure as well as read it.
So, the story starts off with Kitty endorsing free sushi in a sumo-wrestler’s costume, and if that doesn’t completely drawn you in I don’t know what does! She is approached by a cute guy, Andrew, that acts as her love interest, to solve a mystery, as she’s built up quite a reputation for herself. (This is the fourth book in the series and I did not read books one, two, or three. However, this did not hinder my enjoyment of the novel at all, or ruin the plots of the previous books!) The mystery is all to do with the honour of a family, who’s reputation as been sullied because of the events of the Titanic disaster.
If there was one bad thing about this book, it was that it took a while for the minor characters to explain different parts of the backstory to Kitty. I’d say at least 25% of the total book is spent learning about different key events. (If ever I have to write an essay on The Titanic, Egyptian Hieroglyphs or Jack the Ripper, this book had it covered.) This did inhibit the flow of the novel, causing me to be able to split it into multiple sections instead of a continuous storyline. On the other hand, I loved the change of locations between London and Dublin.
My favourite scene was probably the jet-ski chase, which made the front cover of the novel. It was fast paced and full of tension, although the action was sparse because I think this book was more about thinking than doing. I didn’t really understand how old Kitty Hawk was meant to be throughout this series, as Andrew is described as a man, yet he becomes her sort-of-boyfriend. I’m guessing she’s about eighteen, because she can jet around the world by herself with no-one questioning her ID. When reading this book, I kept thinking of the Professor Layton games, because pictures, maps and diagrams are given in this book so the reader can try and puzzle out the mystery as Kitty does. That’s an aspect that really sets this book apart from the rest, along with the research material that is found at the back of the book which explains the inspiration for the events that transpire in the book and real Google searches!
Overall, I’d give Kitty Hawk four stars, because I did enjoy it immensely, however, the pacing was slow in many places which led me to put the book down and put off picking it back up again. I’d recommend this book to anyone that loves Nancy Drew, but wishes Nancy was targeted at a young adult audience!