My Name is Trouble (Trouble: Girl Detective #1) – James Taylor, Marco Sparks


my name is trouble
Genre: Young Adult Mystery
Pages: 398
Release Date: May 28, 2019

Jenny Valentine has a secret. Jenny Valentine is a secret.

Most of her classmates think Jenny is crazy. Sure, everyone read the Trouble books as a kid, but then they moved on. Grew up. But not Jenny. She’s still running around in a purple trench coat at age 16, sticking her nose where it doesn’t belong like it’s her job. No one knows she’s actually the estranged daughter of RJ Valentine, famed author of the bestselling Trouble: Girl Detective book series.

But when tragedy strikes, Jenny is summoned at long last to Valentine Manor. A vast fortune is up for grabs, but only if she can live up to her fictional counterpart’s reputation and solve the biggest mystery of her life. She’ll have to chase the ghosts of a life denied while staying one step ahead of a killer who has made Jenny his next target. It’s a dangerous game, but Jenny likes her odds.

After all, Trouble is her middle name.

My Name is Trouble is the much-anticipated debut novel from the creators of Bros Watch PLL Too. The bros were my one stop shop for everything PLL when it was premiering, so I had to support them in this new endeavor of theirs. And, boy, am I glad I did.

My Name is Trouble follows Jenny Trouble Valentine as she’s summoned to the Valentine Manor where a vast fortune is up for grabs, but only if she can solve a mystery. Jenny is primed for the challenge and determined to win despite all odds.

Jenny is not a character for everyone. She’s brash with an in your face attitude. There’s a fine line to walk when writing a character like this since the goal is to make the character endearing despite their personality. Taylor and Sparks walk this line with precision. I love Jenny even when she says questionable things that made me laugh out loud. Jenny is part Japanese and a lesbian. Though this is not an OWN Voices novel, Taylor and Sparks are aware of diversity and make it a central tenant of the story.

The inspirations for this novel are plain as day. Taylor and Sparks draw from Pretty Little Liars, Veronica Mars, Nancy Drew, and others. There are also pop culture references, mainly Harry Potter, and one can never have too many Harry Potter references. 😉

My Name is Trouble will need to be reread before the sequel comes out. There are so many clues and bits of foreshadowing that went over my head. If you’ve finished the book you should listen to the Bros’ podcast “s01 Wrap-up and Q&A” to find out interesting bits of information about the book that you may not have caught.

Overall, My Name is Trouble is an incredible teen mystery novel that reads like a modern story full of teen angst and cursing with the right amount of over the top ridiculousness that makes these kinds of stories work so well.


Have you read My Name is Trouble? What did you think? If you haven’t read it, will you?

7 thoughts on “My Name is Trouble (Trouble: Girl Detective #1) – James Taylor, Marco Sparks

  1. Wonderful review Nadine!! I love that even the cover is kind of an homage to Nancy Drew. I had to double back and look again when you said it was new, because an initial glance it looked like something from a few decades ago.

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