E. P. Dutton/NAL Penguin Inc: NY, 1978.
Newbery Medal 1979
The Westing Game is an old style whodunit mystery. It was published during a time when Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot movies were popular and has much the same format. There is a slow feeding of seemingly random clues throughout the book, and then, BAM BAM BAM, the whole solution is told by a person (or persons) in rapid fire with many twists. I'm not personally very good at guessing all of the who did what, but I enjoy observing how the whole thing plays out, seeing the connections, looking back at the clues.
In the story, six invitation letters are delivered to entice certain people to reside in the grand new apartment house, Sunset Towers, on the shore of Lake Michigan. Once the apartments are full of the right people, most of the residents, plus 2 workers, are invited to the reading of the will of the wealthy Sam Westing. They are chosen to be heirs due to some connection with the deceased (not necessarily blood related), but the ultimate heir must solve the mystery of Westing's death. They are paired up and given random word clues, though most of the real clues come from observing or investigating each other.
Because the Newbery books at my local library are separate, I have often seen and wondered about the title. I may even have checked out the book and didn't have time to read it. I finally read it, because it was recommended in relation to Blue Balliett's books. This is one of the better Newbery books I've read. Also, one of the best mysteries, though I have not concentrated on that genre in the past.
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