Parents' Guide to

The Westing Game

By Kyle Jackson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 10+

Would-be heirs compete for a fortune in classic mystery.

Book Ellen Raskin Mystery 1978
The Westing Game Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 11+

Based on 3 parent reviews

age 15+

Couldn't Put it Down!

The writing style is unusual but the story is fantastic. You'll be on the edge of your seat trying to figure out the mystery. Get ready for mysteries within mysteries. There is also a great amount of diversity in the reading both racially and through disabilities awareness, Ellen Raskin was ahead of her time! The characters are given strong personalities that you can feel more and more each time you read about them. This is a wonderful book, probably my new favorite. It is also full of vocab words that are fun for students to learn about.

This title has:

Educational value
age 6+

Please judge by your kids

This can work for young kids. Also may not be appropriate until much older. There are references to finding a corpse early on.... this sounds discounting to most of you, but if your read the book yourself, your can tell your kid -- it's the Westing GAME, and don't worry. My kids, 6 and 8, read (aloud) the Harry Potter) books first. They were not bothered by deaths. One kid was very bothered by main characters getting in trouble like Draco catching Harry in the Slytherin train car. He loves this book. After Harry Potter, I wanted to test mysteries. This was the perfect choice. The negative reviewer either doesn't know when or how to read books to kids. You definitely need to know your child. I tried Harry Potter a year earlier and failed. The Westing Game is a brilliant, well-written mystery. I have read every Agatha Christie and every mystery/thriller author I can find BECAUSE of The Westing Game. You are the judge of when your kids can handle it (read it first, it'll take 3 nights total if you are a super slow reader like me). Please don't give a bad rating b/c your kid wasn't ready. Please judge the books on its merits.

This title has:

Educational value
Great messages
Great role models

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (3 ):
Kids say (29 ):

Compelling and convoluted from the start, this gripping mystery never takes its foot off the gas pedal. Every scene contains confounding clues, the reveal at the end is satisfying, and the writing is excellent throughout. The characters are familiar but nuanced enough to seem authentic, and their often-uneasy interactions are a testament to the clash of cultures that occurs when people are thrown into unexpected intimacy with strangers. Readers won't want to put down this page-turner until they find the tantalizing answer to the 200-million-dollar question: Who killed Sam Westing?

Book Details

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