March's Book A Samantha Mystery, The Stolen Sapphire

Grab this months 2 book selections, a blanket and your favorite 18 inch doll friend, don't worry if you happen upon us mid way through, join us when you can and leave your comments here or email me at with any book club questions.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Chapter reviews, Chapters 1-3

Chapter 1-A Strange Encounter
In our first chapter we find  Samantha waiting for Nellie outside of Bertram's Book Store. Mr Bertram gives Samantha a package to take home. Nellie is late as her teacher was putting together some work for her to take with her on their steam boat trip to Europe. The girls discuss their trip and the new french tutor they will have for the journey. The girls talk of taking the ship to London and Paris, and discuss how close they will be to Nellie's family's homeland of Ireland.
Samantha finds she an Nellie are being followed by a boy of about 18 years of age, she is nervous of this boy following them. Nellie recognizes the boy as Jamie, Nellie and Samantha think the boy wants money from him but he says he only wants to talk to Nellie. Jamie hands a small package to Nellie just as a policeman intervenes. The girls head home and find their housekeeper waiting for them and she ushers them in to the house and the girls see their trunks, they are excited to set sail in the next day.

Chapter 2- All Aboard
At 3 in the afternoon the girls along with their grandmother and the Admiral, as well as their new french tutor and Grandma Mary's maid. The girls wave good bye to their family on the dock, Nellie feels worried to leave her sisters as she has not done so since her birth parents died. The girls learn their new french teacher is from France and looking forward to returning home. They notice that their new tutor looks nervous. The girls meet a very snobby girl, Charlotta, who tells them about the Famous Archaeologist Professor Fitzwillam Wharton, who has brought aboard an unlucky gem stone! At the end of the chapter something with a long tail flutters in front of Samantha's face!

Chapter 3- An Unlucky Star
In this chapter we meet Plato the monkey! The girls are excited! The girls see their room for the first time, the girls unpack and discover the books that their Aunt sent for them to read. They are very happy and excited! Nellie seems overcome with motion sickness and so is Grandmary, so The Admiral and Samantha go to dinner together. They eat in the Captian's private dinning room. A reporter has purchased passage to be on the boat because of the Sapphire and Professor Wharton, he tries to talk to the Professor as they go into dinner. He is turned away as he is not a first class passenger. At dinner Samantha enjoys a steaming bowl of Clam Chowder.  Samantha tells Charlotta about Nellie's past and quickly regrets it! During the second course of Turkey stuffing and cranberry sauce talk turns to the bad luck the sapphire is said to bring. We learn that the Professor carries the Sapphire with him where ever he goes. The room is treated to seeing the Sapphire and more talk of the bad luck that follows the person who has the sapphire continues.

So looking back at the first three chapters what are your feelings about Jamie and Nellie's meeting?
In the second chapter if you put yourself in Samantha's shoes how do you think she feels about the up coming trip? Now put yourself in Nellie's shoes and how do you think she feels. Compare the two, which girl's feelings would you identify with?
In chapter three, how would you fell if you learned you were on a ship with something that had a reputation of having bad luck? In today's society, the classes mix on cruise ships but in Samantha's time they did not. People like Charlotta and her family would have turned their noses up at anyone with Nellie's background, how does this make you feel?

I would love to hear your thoughts and comments, so please leave a comment below or email me at

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