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I'm in need of recommendations for mystery books for my almost 12 year old. He doesn't want one where someone gets hurt let alone someone dies. More like something has gone missing and finding out who did it. He loves the Boxcar Children but wants to move on.

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Has he read the Encyclopedia Brown series? Also The 2-Minute Mysteries by the same author.

What about the Winston Breen books, those are puzzle-solving as part of a treasure hunt.

In a similar vein is Mr. Lemoncello's Library.

There are tons of mystery books for that she at the library, but without being able to flip through I'm not sure they won't have death or injury...

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I used to love The Three Investigators.  Alfred Hitchcock,  for some reason,  always showed up in the last chapter.  Investigators are three boys, middle grade age. 

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It's hard to think of mystery books that are a step up from kiddie mysteries, but where no harm comes to anyone. My kids liked the Chasing Vermeer series by Blue Balliett, and I would usually have no problem recommending it for a 12-year old, but there is a sense that some harm might come to kids who meddle too much, and a child is kidnapped in the last book. Has he read From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg? That was one of my favorites as a child, and I don't remember any violence. We liked The Matchstick Castle by Keir Graff--it has missing people but nobody is killed or seriously injured. The Mysterious Benedict society is a favorite here too, and the protagonists have a strict moral code of not being like the bad guys and injuring or killing their opponants, but the bad guys are really bad and cause a lot of injuries and near-fatal close calls. The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin is a modern classic, and starts as a murder mystery but spoilers spoilers spoilers the murder victim isn't actually dead but living under an alias. 

Edited by mellifera33
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Some fun picture book/puzzle mysteries with a huge dose of humor:
- The Eleventh Hour (Base)
- Seymour Sleuth mysteries (Cushman)
     Mystery of King Karfu
     Mystery of the Monkey's Maze
     Mystery at the Club Sandwich

chapter books -- some are at the same age/grade level as Boxcar Children:
- Wollstonecraft Detective Agency series (Murphy)
- The Chinatown Mystery series (Yep)
- The Secret series (Bosch)
- Sammy Keyes series (Van Draanen)
- Math Inspector series (Kennedy)
- Meg Mackintosh Solve It Yourself series (Landon)
- The Clubhouse mysteries (Draper)
- From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler (Konigsberg)
- Chasing Vermeer (Balliet)
- Mysterious Benedict Society series (Trenton)

mini-mystery collections:
- Encyclopedia Brown series (Sobol)

more mini-mystery collections -- these often involve a dead body, BUT they are just a few pages long, so there is NO time to dwell on atmosphere or pain, just clues trying to solve "whodunnit":
- Two Minute Mysteries and sequels (Sobol)
- Hy Conrad collections -- overall more "gentle" ones include:
     Case of the Ghostly Note & Other Solve-It-Yourself Mysteries
     Almost Perfect Crimes: Mini Mysteries for you to Solve
     Whodunnit: You Decide
- Dr. Quicksolve series of mini-mysteries (Sukach)

Edited by Lori D.
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