"A great fun read about making friends and adventure…really enjoyable and easy paced. The characters are really relatable… Lovely feel good factor. Really enjoyable."
 Tara Keating, Bookish Dreams Blog
The Secret of Dinswood
Desperate to get away from a home where she no longer feels wanted, twelve-year-old Emma Higsby is elated when she wins a scholarship to the prestigious Dinswood Academy boarding school. 

Emma quickly falls in love with the renovated castle nestled in the heart of the mountains. But when rumors surface that her new school is having financial problems and may have to close, she begins to search for a way to save her new home.

When she discovers a riddle of buried treasure left by the eccentric school’s founder, Lord Dinswood, she and her friends must use their courage and intelligence to solve each clue.

But someone else is searching for the treasure as well. Emma and her friends will have to race against time and discover the secret of Dinswood first!
Ellen Alexander
The Dinswood Chronicles #1
ISBN Numbers:
Hardcover: 978-1-948540-48-3
Softcover:  978-1-947727-55-7
Ebook:       978-1-948540-36-0
LCCN: 2018936815

Page Count: 408
Release Date: 02/26/2019
Middle Grade Fiction / Adventure
Book Information
The Secret of Dinswood by Ellen Alexander
Hardcover, Softcover, Ebook
Hardcover, Softcover, Ebook
Hardcover, Softcover
Hardcover, Softcover
Hardcover, Softcover, Ebook
Hardcover, Softcover, Ebook
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"I loved this wonderful adventure! …just the kind of book I wish I had read more of when I was actually in my middle grade years."
 — Avalinah’s Books
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Available Formats: Hardcover | Softcover | Ebook
"This was a good action-packed adventure YA middle grade story inspired by the movie The Goonies. If you enjoy books like this, definitely check this book out…"
 Amber Buttrum, NetGalley and Goodreads reviewer
"The characters were likable, and the riddle sequence was very exciting… Overall, I'd recommend this fun story."
 Deborah White, NetGalley and Genre Reviews Blog
"This a well-written juvenile adventure which reminded me of Harry Potter because of the setting. It's set in a school in a remote area, like Hogwarts. And the kids in this book are about the age Harry and the gang were when they started school. The story is engaging and kept me reading to the end. I think young adults that like mysteries would probably love this book, and it's very much PG-rated. Who wouldn't want to go to boarding school in a mysterious castle? I know I would!"
 Tia Ayuzawa, NetGalley and Tia Reads Blog
"I loved this book! It's written with teenagers in mind, but I enjoyed it as an adult woman. This is a nice adventure story with mysteries. The start reminded me a little of Harry Potter, but without the magic. A few chapters in the story gets less HP-like and more into it's own style…a great read."
 Max Willems, NetGalley and Literary Crab Blog
"This was such a fun book! I've always been a fan of books that take place at schools ever since reading Harry Potter as a child. I loved reading about all the adventures of every day life at Dinswood, and of course the hunt for the treasure left me on the edge of my seat. Each new clue had a new more dangerous adventure. I hope to read more about the gangs future years at Dinswood."
 Stephanie Friedman, NetGalley Reviewer
"Definitely has a classic feel to it, and is entertaining from start to finish. I felt connected to the main characters and their hunt for treasure, then their hunt to beat the others to the treasure, all so they can save their boarding school. Definitely a great adventure."
 Kensley Lewis, The Broken Bookshelf Blog and NetGalley Reviewer
"The Secret of Dinswood is a story full of mystery, adventure and most important of all, friendship. The friendship between Emma, Martha, Doug and Sebastian is the foundation of this great story and flowed strongly throughout the whole book. The mystery never felt dragged on. The switch between heartfelt and dialogue chapters and the adventure and action chapters felt very natural. As a reader I was fully committed from the first page. A highly enjoyable book full of adventure that I recommend to readers of all ages."
 Ilona Groen, The Vivacious Book Nerd
"…an appropriate coming of age story. I would recommend this book for kids a little older, 11-13. It is a good book for young readers and as an elementary librarian, I think it will be popular with our 4-6 graders."
 Natalie Cooper, Librarian and NetGalley Reviewer
"…a fun, middle grade adventure novel set in a castle boarding school. Fans of Harry Potter who like the aspects of adventure with a group of friends in a boarding school location should enjoy this. The book models positive values like patience, persistence, and being there for others. I would recommend for middle grades and older readers…"
 Katie Brown, NetGalley Reviewer
"This rollicking story for middle grades was full of excitement and suspense."
 Sandy McPherson, LibraryThing  Early Reviewers
"This is a great book for middle graders and adults both. I enjoyed this read…"
 Jo Ann HakolaThe Book Faerie & Member of IOBA
"…suspenseful and cleverly planned."
"This is a great book and I would really recommend it…"
 Mind of Luxe
"A solid middle grade read perfect for those looking for a light-hearted treasure hunt with a bit of suspense."
 Erratic Project Junkie
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"Ellen Alexander spins an intriguing young adult mystery."
 Kurt's Frontier Book Blog
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Ellen Alexander
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Ellen Alexander
Meet The Author
Other Books in the Series
The Missing Mortals by Ellen Alexander
The Phantom of the East Tower by Ellen Alexander
The Hampton House Mystery by Ellen Alexander