The Mystery at Peacock Hall created by Gertrude Chandler Warner
The Aldens are going to Monticello, to visit somebody grandfather knows. She lives pretty close to Monticello and actually works there. In case you didn’t know, Monticello is the house that Thomas Jefferson designed, and worked on for many years, in addition to getting in on with his special ladies there. There are plenty of quirky things about Monticello, as the Aldens soon find out. Thomas Jefferson was an inventor. He tried to invent a clock, but part of it ended up on a different floor.
The problem with the whole thing is that their host is about to lose her house. She owes some back taxes. Another relative wants to buy her out, for a fraction of what it’s worth. She has until the auction to pay the taxes. Her house is called Peacock Hall. Supposedly, there’s a treasure in the house somewhere. The Aldens set about looking for it in hopes that the tax bill can be paid. Some other strange stuff goes on as well. Someone may or may not be living in the smoke house. Is there really a treasure of Peacock Hall? Will that peacock let Benny have one of his feathers?
What I liked
Ok, so the part about Thomas Jefferson getting it on with his special ladies at Monticello was not actually in this book, but I thought I’d enlighten anyone who didn’t know. Thomas Jefferson had at least one child, that looked a lot like him, besides the obvious difference in skin colors, with one of his slaves.
What I didn’t like
Property taxes are stupid. So you buy a house and then you pay it off, but you still have to pay the government, every single year, otherwise they’ll take your house, even though it’s good and paid for. Jerks. I think if you own your house, you own your house, or you should own your house. There shouldn’t be any of this, “Oh, you forgot to pay your taxes, so we’re auctioning off your house, even though the taxes you owe are like a thousand dollars, which is a small fraction of what the house is worth and what you’ve paid on it.” This is just one example of how our government infrastructure is a bit broken. A lot of those property taxes go to schools, but you still have to pay property taxes even if you don’t make use of the schools in any manner.
I don’t find it likely that the woman in this story would be offered any kind of extension, especially since an auction was already scheduled. I think the government would just be like, “Too bad, you had your chance.” They don’t care if you’re losing a house that has been in the family for generations.
If only there was some mystery treasure in the house I live in.
Do you like peacocks?
What do you think about property taxes?