How to solve a mystery – Ally Carter-style

Ally Carter and her heroines are the queens of mysteries and mischief. Cammie from the ‘Gallagher Girls’ series is a spy-in-training, Kat from ‘Heist Society’ comes from a family of thieves and Grace from the ‘Embassy Row’s series is determined to uncover the secret behind her mother’s murder. These girls know how to create mysteries and solve them, and today, we’re going to show you how to solve a mystery – Ally Carter style.


The Case of the Boy Not Texting Back


This is a case agonised over by girls and women everywhere. It’s something that can drive you insane for days, but we think following Cammie’s example should get us some answers.

  1. Follow him. Is he tied into family events? Is there another girl? Is he up to something bad? Just make sure you’re not seen.
  2. Use your friend to stage a distraction and grab that phone. Did the text even come through? Has he drafted a response 12 times (we know you totally did that)? Is his phone even working? Just remember to be quick and have it back before he notices it’s gone.
  3. But if you still have no answer: ask. Be bold, be brave, corner him where he can’t escape and ask “Hey, did you get my text? My phone is seriously messing me around lately!”

The Case of the Stolen Pop Tart


You know the story: there’s only one Pop Tart left in the packet and that sucker is going to be yours, but you don’t want it right now. So you tuck it away only to find that when you go back for it, it’s gone. 

  1. The Prime Suspects: Mum, Dad, your snotty little brother, let’s call him Ben.
  2. Motive: Mum was got up so late she didn’t have time for breakfast, Dad’s on a reluctant diet and, well, little brothers.
  3. Evidence: Empty packet left on the side (Ben or Dad), No apples left (Mum’s breakfast-on-the-go?), crumbs in the car when he picks you up from Beth’s (Dad).
  4. It’s not looking good for Dad right now…

The Case of the Strange Dream

no no noooo

You would never want to kiss your best friend. Right? RIGHT?! Well, apparently dream you disagrees. Let’s get to the bottom of this.

  1. Did you watch a kissy film before bed? Maybe read chapter 62 of ‘Unravel Me’ by Tahereh Mafi?
  2. Did you eat a midnight snack? Apparently chocolate can cause weird dreams – who knew?!
  3. And brace yourself, this is the big one: Do you have secret mushy feelings for your BFF? Well. I think the lady doth protest too much…

The Case of the AWOL Teacher


You’re favourite maths teacher has vanished with no warning and even the teachers seem confused… Now this is a mystery for Grace! In ‘All Fall Down’, Grace lost her mum to a horrific accident, but Grace saw something no one else did: a man with a scar, but no one else did. Her family thinks she’s mad, but in ‘See How They Run’ Grace is going to prove them wrong and get her mum justice. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Mr Cooke happens to have a hot son just your age? Befriend him. And maybe a date won’t hurt either.
  2. Learn everything there is to know about Mr Cooke’s son, and so obviously Mr Cooke too.
  3. Share your suspicions with the hot boy you’re kinda, sorta falling for and launch an investigation.

So there you are. Now you’re fully equipped to deal with every kind of mystery thrown your way, and you probably met a cutie or two on the way (go you!). Now you’re in league with Ally Carter’s heroines and ready to be a heroine of your own.

Have you ever solved a mystery? Share with us at @maximumpopbooks!

Leave a Reply




Written by Sophie Waters

Sophie is the Head of Commercial at Maximum Pop! Having studied English Lit and Creative Writing at Bath Spa University, she came to MP! to satisfy her passion for books. Sophie is a diehard Hufflepuff and feminist. She's also a huge cat lover, and can often be found rocking her socks off at a gig.

[g1_socials_user user="148" icon_size="28" icon_color="text"]

And the winner is… WIN: 1 of 5 signed copies of Grace Helbig’s ‘Grace and Style’!

Teen Wolf recap: Escape from Eichen House