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Three Times Lucky

Turnage, Sheila

Book - 2012
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Three Times Lucky
Washed ashore as a baby in tiny Tupelo Landing, North Carolina, Mo LoBeau, now eleven, and her best friend Dale turn detective when the amnesiac Colonel, owner of a café and co-parent of Mo with his cook, Miss Lana, seems implicated in a murder.

Publisher: New York : Dial Books for Young Readers, c2012
ISBN: 0803736703
Characteristics: 312 p. ;,22 cm
Alternate Title: 3 times lucky


From Library Staff

A humorous mystery set in a small town in the South starring a completely charming and spirited heroine, 11 year old Mo LoBeau and her loving and eccentric adoptive family.

From the critics

Community Activity


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Dec 17, 2014
  • mmcbeth29 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

First of all, I do not usually like books with small town or hick culture. But from the very first page, this book grabbed me, pulled me in, and wouldn't let go until the end. Turnage writes in such a manner that the book moves along at a very fast pace. I kept wanting to know what would happen next. Turnage does not bog you down with lengthy descriptions and has plenty of dialogue and humor.

Mo is a girl who was found after a hurricane as a baby and this is her story. She is an impulsive and lively girl. She is always asking questions. Her best friend is Dale, a cautious boy with an abusive father. In their little town, a murder, a kidnapping and a hurricane happen. Mo and Dale attempt to solve the murder and the kidnapping and get into all sorts of mischief along the way.

The mystery keeps you guessing until the very end. And not everything works out quite as expected. There are some potentially dark elements in this story, but Turnage does an excellent job of keeping them light and not dwelling on the dark parts. There is a bit of violence. But there is no cussing, no sex, no drugs--so in every other way this is a clean, clean, clean story which is a wonderful rarity even in a junior novel.

Not everything is perfect about this book, but five stars for good writing and a riveting book. This book is advertized for grades 5 and up. This is a good grade range although the characters are sixth graders.

Jul 21, 2014
  • purlgirl rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Golden Sower nominee for 2014-15. Good choice for a light summer read. Mystery set in small town North Carolina during hurricane season.

Mar 26, 2013

March 2013 Kids' Books newsletter

Mar 20, 2013
  • branch_reviews rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Miss Moses LoBeau washed ashore in tiny Tupelo Landing, North Carolina during a hurricane 11 years ago. She was taken in by the Colonel, a man with secrets of his own, and Miss Lana, who is the hostess at the Colonel’s café. As much as she loves them, she dreams of someday meeting her “Upstream Mother.” The eccentric local citizens regularly take bottles with Mo’s note – “You lost me in a hurricane 11 years ago. I’m ok. Write or call. 252-555-4663” - in them out of town with them to drop upstream. When a city detective shows up in town, investigating a murder, smart and sassy Mo and her best friend Dale Earnhardt Johnson III decide to solve the mystery themselves. This rollicking, hilarious mystery shimmers with the heat of a southern summer as Mo and Dale try to keep one step ahead of detective Joe Starr, but it also has a serious side. Debut novel and Newbery Honor book for the author. Reviewed by DC

Nov 21, 2012

Moses Le Beau washed up in Tupelo Landing eleven years ago during a horrific hurricane. She was rescued by the Colonel, who named her, and she was taken in by Miss Lana and the Colonel, who run a cafe where Mo and her best friend, Dale, help out.When Mr. Jesse Tatum is found dead and a boy whose description fits Dale perfectly is a suspect, Mo decides that she has to find the killer and prove Dale's innocence. Detective Starr and Deputy Marla arrive on the scene looking for the culprit in another murder but stay on to find Jesse's killer. However, their presence seems to be causing more problems and when Miss Lana disappears, Mo has to decide whom she can trust. Reviewed by BPL volunteer LS

Sep 22, 2012
  • ELIZABETH RAMSEY BIRD rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

with the delight that is Three Times Lucky I’m going to hope for a kind of Southern kid Renaissance. Let’s see what we can’t do about getting more books like this one into the hands of children from all over the country. It’s got a murder for crying out loud. That’s gotta be good for something. A novel that hits on all cylinders. Grab it, read it, enjoy it, and find a kid to thrust it upon. Worth discovering.


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Jun 26, 2014
  • violet_dog_1885 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

violet_dog_1885 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

Mar 20, 2013
  • branch_reviews rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

branch_reviews thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

Sep 22, 2012
  • ELIZABETH RAMSEY BIRD rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

ELIZABETH RAMSEY BIRD thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 9 and 12


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Sep 22, 2012
  • ELIZABETH RAMSEY BIRD rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

It was just bad timing when you get right down to it. Dale just wanted to borrow Mr. Jesse’s boat for a little fishing and his best friend Mo LoBeau would have accompanied him if she hadn’t been working the town’s only café while her two guardians (the elegant Miss Lana and the amnesia-stricken Colonel) were unavailable. Then Mr. Jesse offered a reward for the boat, and that seemed worth taking advantage of. That was before he ended up dead. Caught inadvertently in the middle of a murder mystery, Mo decides to help solve the crime, hopefully without making Detective Joe Starr too angry in the process.


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Dec 17, 2014
  • mmcbeth29 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Violence: Domestic abuse


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Sep 22, 2012
  • ELIZABETH RAMSEY BIRD rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

- “I wouldn’t say stole . . . But I did borrow it pretty strong.”

- “By 7:30 half the town had crowded into the café and rising seventh grader Skeeter McMillan – tall, slender, freckles the color of fresh-sliced baloney – had claimed this counter’s last spot.”

- “The stranger looked slow around the café, his eyes the color of a thin winter sky.”

- “Miss Lana’s voice is the color of sunlight in maple syrup.”

- “Mr. Li started Karate Night at the café two years ago . . . I enjoy kicking others but would do better in an art that allows spitting.”

- “I used to think Dale was clumsy. Then I realized he only got clumsy when Mr. Macon took drunk.”

- “My voice is like a turkey gobble crammed in a corset, but nobody’s told me to stop singing, and I ain’t shy.”

- “Dale can choose not to worry like he chooses not to wear socks. Miss Lana says I have more of a Jack Russell brain. I think things apart for sport.”

- “I never forgive. I like revenge too much.”

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app14 Version produkt Last updated 2015/03/30 12:38