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The Westing Game | [Ellen Raskin]

The Westing Game

One fateful day, 16 people gather for the reading of the will of the very rich Samuel W. Westing. To their surprise, the will turns out to be a contest, challenging the heirs to find out who among them is Westing's murderer. Only two people hold all the clues. One is a Westing heir...and the other is the listener!
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Publisher's Summary

One fateful day, 16 people gather for the reading of the will of the very rich Samuel W. Westing. To their surprise, the will turns out to be a contest, challenging the heirs to find out who among them is Westing's murderer. Only two people hold all the clues. One is a Westing heir...and the other is the listener!

©1997 Ellen Raskin; (P)2007 Penguin Group USA

What the Critics Say

  • Newbery Medal, 1979

"A supersharp mystery...Confoundingly clever, and very funny." (Booklist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (420 )
5 star
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Overall
4.0 (311 )
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3 star
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1 star
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Story
4.0 (300 )
5 star
 (132)
4 star
 (89)
3 star
 (50)
2 star
 (16)
1 star
 (13)
Performance
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  •  
    Richard montclair, NJ, USA 02-23-08
    Richard montclair, NJ, USA 02-23-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    29
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    15
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    "A Great Suspense Story"

    I read it in the summer between fourth and fifth grade, and really loved it. I like that it is a really complicated mystery with so many clues and possibilities that it's almost impossible to figure it out. My favorite character was Turle, a girl a little older than me because she was really smart and spunky and not afraid of anything.

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mom2four 08-19-13
    Mom2four 08-19-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    34
    1
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    0
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    "Couldn't finish it"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    We couldn't finish this book at all and will be returning it so I can read it aloud to my kids rather than listen. The reader was so monotone it was hard to follow and keep track of all the characters. He came to life when giving voices to each character, but the narration was extremely difficult to tolerate. Bummed as we were trying to listen while riding in the car on vacation. Learning to listen to the samples first to help minimize this kind of disappointment.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    Have no idea since we didn't finish it.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Eric Michael Summerer’s performances?

    I doubt it.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary Ryan 02-08-11
    Mary Ryan 02-08-11 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    78
    14
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    "Quick read, fun story"

    This book was a quick read, and a really fun story. Would work well for a variety of age groups.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dave Whittier, CA 07-29-15
    Dave Whittier, CA 07-29-15 Member Since 2011

    I'm a big fan of SF/F/Horror, and all things in between and out.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "They Really Don't Make Them Like This Anymore"

    Here's something I wasn't expecting -- a quirky little mystery packed with interesting, flawed, often-hilarious characters and experiences and tinged with the bittersweetness of growing up. Sixteen people are invited to live in a prestige apartment building by a mysterious benefactor. Soon, they discover that Sam Westing, the millionaire who lives at the top of the hill, is dead, and they've all been named as potential heirs, and are invited to play a game. Each character in this diverse cast has secrets and fears and motivations -- be it the kids or the adults -- and there isn't any obvious single protagonist. Best of all, it's a YA novel that never considers condescending to a younger audience.

    My 10 year-old daughter discovered it in her school library, and she loved it so much I picked up the audiobook to listen to with her. I have lost count over how many times she's relistened to it.

    Eric Michael Summerer provides a solid no frills-narration that might sound a little flat to some, but he brings a confidence to the reading that helps anchor all the different characters and the complexities of the story in a relatively short amount of time. He made it sound easy (and good)!

    This is simply an excellent novel (It won the Newbery back in '78) that's at times smart, funny, exciting and surprisingly emotional.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brian 08-27-14
    Brian 08-27-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    1
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    "Fantastic rendition of a favorite book"
    What did you love best about The Westing Game?

    This was one of my favourite books as a child and I was very happy that the book itself did not disappoint me as an adult.

    I also very much enjoyed the narration. The narrator really brought to life the different characters and, if possible, made me enjoy the book even more than when I had read it in print.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Westing Game?

    The denouement honestly made me cry.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The court scene.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    The game is afoot


    Any additional comments?

    I thoroughly enjoyed this novel. It had excellent pacing and a mystery that was suitable for younger readers, but the extremely well fleshed out characters and setting, and the real plot behind the mystery, make it a delight for readers of any age.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carolyn SAINT PAUL, MN, United States 03-19-13
    Carolyn SAINT PAUL, MN, United States 03-19-13 Member Since 2011

    I am a proud Mexican woman that loves words and reading/listening to books. I also believe that only through knowledge can we achieve progress.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
    ratings
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    34
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    "A Game of Wits"

    I read this book when I was very young in school and I went back to it now and remembered how my love of the murder mystery started. A stand out great book that provides entertainment and fun through the ages.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mandi 05-12-12
    Mandi 05-12-12 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great Mystery!"

    One of my all-time favorite books. I love the continual twists right to the end!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Word Nerd United States 03-29-09
    Word Nerd United States 03-29-09 Listener Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    139
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    52
    37
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    "Pretty good"

    This is a cute, whimsical story full of curious people and mysterious events. It was entertaining, to say the least, and I'd recommend it to anyone. However, I felt the story could have been improved all around. Many of the characters were indistinguishable, particularly the women. I kept getting confused as to who was who (oddly enough, the Who's were the easiest to keep track of). That was one problem. Also confusing were the side plots, which didn't seem to have anything to do with anything. The thief and the bomber . . . what was that all about? The third issue was that some of the side plots were more adult-oriented like the Wexler marital problems which had the potential to bore a kid to death. Fortunately, those situations were scarce so the main thing was just confusion of plot and characters.

    What I loved about the book was Turtle, of course, and the mystery of the Westing murder, and the chess game going on in the background, both physically and metaphorically.

    Overall, the entertainment value of The Westing Game was fairly high.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michelle Bruce 08-04-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Amazing!!!!"

    This book is twisted but great, crazy but a great mystery. Ellen Raskin, I praise you for this book because although you may not see it at the beginning ,at the end it is all so clear. Everyone gets their happy ending, even old Sam Westing him self..well all four of him selves. Let the four winds guide you and make sure you read this book , for it will make you have a whole new perspective than you did when you stared it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Troy Hightower 07-31-15 Member Since 2014
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    3
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    "The best!"

    As a senior citizen I thoroughly enjoyed this book. i it was recommended by slates cultural fest. this is an excellent book even though it's for young readers I recommend that adults read it

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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