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Viva Durant and The Secret of the Silver Buttons

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Viva Durant, New Orleans’ youngest detective, is on a quest to solve a jazzy mystery involving hidden treasure, while exploring the city’s unique culture, history, and music. This family-friendly audio original features original jazz music from the creator, Ashli St. Armant, and an enthusiastic performance from Audible Hall of Fame narrator, Bahni Turpin. Plucky 14-year-old Viva Durant, New Orleans’ youngest detective, is on a quest to solve a jazzy mystery involving hidden treasure, while exploring the city’s unique culture, history, and music. This family-friendly audio original features original jazz music from the creator, Ashli St. Armant, and an enthusiastic performance from Audible Hall of Fame narrator, Bahni Turpin. Plucky 14-year-old Viva Durant heads to New Orleans every summer to spend time with her loving but stern grandmother, known as Gram. After Gram reads Viva an article in the local paper about a missing treasure related to the world-famous song, "Miss Mary Mack," Viva traverses the Crescent City on an epic adventure to solve the mystery. Along the way she meets some of the city’s most colorful characters as her journey takes her to the French Quarter, a jazz club, a creepy cemetery, and even the circus. Can Viva rise to the occasion and solve this musical mystery? Listeners will find Viva Durant and the Secret of the Silver Buttons a joy to listen to!


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Viva Durant, New Orleans’ youngest detective, is on a quest to solve a jazzy mystery involving hidden treasure, while exploring the city’s unique culture, history, and music. This family-friendly audio original features original jazz music from the creator, Ashli St. Armant, and an enthusiastic performance from Audible Hall of Fame narrator, Bahni Turpin. Plucky 14-year-old Viva Durant, New Orleans’ youngest detective, is on a quest to solve a jazzy mystery involving hidden treasure, while exploring the city’s unique culture, history, and music. This family-friendly audio original features original jazz music from the creator, Ashli St. Armant, and an enthusiastic performance from Audible Hall of Fame narrator, Bahni Turpin. Plucky 14-year-old Viva Durant heads to New Orleans every summer to spend time with her loving but stern grandmother, known as Gram. After Gram reads Viva an article in the local paper about a missing treasure related to the world-famous song, "Miss Mary Mack," Viva traverses the Crescent City on an epic adventure to solve the mystery. Along the way she meets some of the city’s most colorful characters as her journey takes her to the French Quarter, a jazz club, a creepy cemetery, and even the circus. Can Viva rise to the occasion and solve this musical mystery? Listeners will find Viva Durant and the Secret of the Silver Buttons a joy to listen to!

30 review for Viva Durant and The Secret of the Silver Buttons

  1. 5 out of 5

    Alaina

    It was a pretty cute and short audiobook. I sort of, kind of, like these little audible originals. It's a smidge hard to pick the two books out of the six options.. but I feel like I've done pretty good so far. In Viva Durant and the Secret of the Silver Buttons we meet - well Viva. She is the Nancy Drew in New Orleans and she is out to discover a mysterious treasure. Now it revolves around a old nursey rhyme(ish?) that I remember clapping along to when I was kid. Heck I'm still a big kid at 27 It was a pretty cute and short audiobook. I sort of, kind of, like these little audible originals. It's a smidge hard to pick the two books out of the six options.. but I feel like I've done pretty good so far. In Viva Durant and the Secret of the Silver Buttons we meet - well Viva. She is the Nancy Drew in New Orleans and she is out to discover a mysterious treasure. Now it revolves around a old nursey rhyme(ish?) that I remember clapping along to when I was kid. Heck I'm still a big kid at 27 but details. As for the rhyme, it's all about Miss Mary Mack. Apparently, in this book, this whole thing had hidden clues within the game. So Viva, being the little Nancy Drew that she is, tried to find any meaning within it. If the title wasn't a big enough hint, it was about the damn buttons. Still a cute little book that I can totally see myself re-listening to over and over again. Especially when I'm in the mood for short books that are to the point. I will definitely see if I can find any other books by this author as well.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Natasha

    Exceeding enjoyable little mystery. Exactly what I needed to read right now.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Aly

    This was a fun, quick audio. Viva is a curious, smart 14 year old who goes to stay with her grandmother in New Orleans for the summer. While she's there, she investigates a case of missing silver buttons and possibly hidden treasure. The story was well done and the audio had singing and music that enhanced the story. I liked the mystery and following the clues to see what really happened. I would listen to more of these :)

  4. 4 out of 5

    Katie

    Fun little audiobook

  5. 5 out of 5

    Shreya Chandwadkar

    This is meant for children. Why? because everything goes the protagonist's way. Ain't nobody gon treat you good all the time Viva. The real world is cruel. A good story to make your younger cousins listen to. Has fun supporting sounds as well. Also, every chapter ends and begins with a 10-second jazz piece :) All in all, a one time listen.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Zinzee Noel

    I really enjoyed this story and the narration was also great. The ending completely surprised me.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Alex Shrugged

    This audiobook was a free monthly selection as part of my Audible subscription. I dropped a star on this book because the main character, Viva Durant, lied to her grandmother multiple times to direct questions, and Viva did not seem repentant. In other words, lying to adults is considered a reasonable thing to do if telling the truth will stop that child from doing something it wants to do. In this case, Viva wanted to satisfy her curiosity. She was seeking a treasure by solving the clues hidden This audiobook was a free monthly selection as part of my Audible subscription. I dropped a star on this book because the main character, Viva Durant, lied to her grandmother multiple times to direct questions, and Viva did not seem repentant. In other words, lying to adults is considered a reasonable thing to do if telling the truth will stop that child from doing something it wants to do. In this case, Viva wanted to satisfy her curiosity. She was seeking a treasure by solving the clues hidden in a nursery rhyme. This was a treasure hunt without any redeeming reason other than greed although Viva displayed only displayed the natural curiosity of a treasure hunt. Whatever altruistic motivations Viva had were unclear. It seems as if she lied only to prevent adults from stopping her from satisfying her curiosity and for a vague hope for treasure. And she lied to several adults. It is not as if she lied to save a life, or to spare her grandmother pain, or at least to feel terribly guilty while Viva does something she knows any responsible adult would object to. She also lied in front of an adult who knew the truth while she was lying to another adult, thus implicitly endorsing the lie and granting Viva permission to lie. That is why I dropped a star from this review. In the end, Viva does display a sense of doing the right thing, but at that late date it was unbelievable. It came out of left field as if the author suddenly realized that she needed to teach children a moral lesson. (view spoiler)[ The lesson is to return lost objects to their owners. After she finds the treasure, paying out $600 to buy the item from an antique shop, Viva then seeks out the person originally looking for the treasure... without a thought that she had just paid out all that money. That was a lot of money for a child. Yet, she never struggled with the moral issue. She never hoped for a reward to offset her expenses. Viva was not a greedy child, but she was also not especially altruistic, so the ending became a surprise. FYI, my guess is that the treasure's value was over $10,000 at 2019 prices. (hide spoiler)] Other than that, the story was fun if somewhat unbelievable at points for an adult audience. Generally speaking, stranger things have happened. If you are a parent listening to this audiobook with your child, you might want to stop the story to say something like, "You would never lie to me, would you?" You will naturally get a negative response... a total lie... but the lesson will be learned that lying to get what you want is wrong. Once again, I believe that lying to people is OK under limited circumstances such as to spare another person's feelings. For example, I would never say, "You are the ugliest person I have ever seen." Even if true, I would look for something I could compliment like, "Hey! Nice shoes!" :-) Also, telling jokes, at some level, is lying. A joke is not funny unless it has a core of truth, but generally speaking a joke has a lot of exaggeration (thus lies) around the edges. Finally, I would also lie to save a life. Thus if a woman came screaming down the street with her dress torn and bloody as she turned down an alley, and then a man came running up to me with a bloody knife to ask me where the woman ran off to, I would point in the opposite direction. I would lie. This would probably be the right thing to do. This seems obvious. I might revisit this audiobook later to see if my impressions have changed.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Alan Teder

    Fun Children's/YA Jazz/New Orleans-Themed Mystery Review of the Audible Original audiobook (2019) This was an extremely well done children's/young adult mystery by jazz performer / music educator Ashli St. Armant (who sings under the stage name of Jazzy Ash). It had a fun story line and an excellent audio production with incidental music, presumably by Jazzy Ash herself and her band the Leaping Lizards. The story has 14-year-old Viva Durant spending a summer vacation with her grandmother in New Fun Children's/YA Jazz/New Orleans-Themed Mystery Review of the Audible Original audiobook (2019) This was an extremely well done children's/young adult mystery by jazz performer / music educator Ashli St. Armant (who sings under the stage name of Jazzy Ash). It had a fun story line and an excellent audio production with incidental music, presumably by Jazzy Ash herself and her band the Leaping Lizards. The story has 14-year-old Viva Durant spending a summer vacation with her grandmother in New Orleans. While there she begins to investigate a mystery built around the traditional children's clapping song Mary Mack (the subject of the song is turned into a fictitious jazz singer for this plot). Real life elements and historical jazz figures of New Orleans were mentioned throughout the plot as well so that helps to make it an educational feature for young music students. The wrap-up to the story left it open for a possible sequel and hopefully Ashli St. Armant will continue with this side-line to her music career. The narration by Bahni Turpin was excellent in all voices, although I assume the occasional singing parts were done by Ashli St. Armant. Viva Durant and The Secret of the Silver Buttons was one of the free Audible Originals for members in November 2019. Trivia and Links Jazzy Ash's website includes a recipe for making beignets at http://www.jazzyash.com/let-s-make-be... Hear/see Jazzy Ash sing "Mary Mack" at this YouTube video here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SfvVj...

  9. 4 out of 5

    Denise

    Cute story with excellent narration. However, the whole thing felt a little too juvenile and simplistic, lacking conflicts that would keep things interesting. The protagonist is supposed to be 14, but she came across more like an 11- or 12-year-old to me. Using music in the story was a nice touch, but having the same melody repeated over and over got annoying after a while.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Robin Mandell

    Really charming and entertaining. The performance and production are both excellent.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Heidi

    Cute story, probably more for kids than adults but still fun for adults to listen to with their kids.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Joan

    Wonderful main character, lots of fun action and the dialog is well written. The plot dragged a bit in parts. Overall charming and engaging mystery- and Viva is a great friend to hang with.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Robin Hatcher

    This was an enjoyable young adult Audible Original. I'm not a huge fan of music and background "noise" in audiobooks. I prefer a good narrator, reading the story the way it was written. That said, the addition of those things did fit the ambiance of the New Orleans setting and the woman Viva was investigating.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Krysten Blouin

    Cute Audible Original story. I wasn’t super impressed with the music throughout the production. It was also strange how the author included so many unrelated details that never really got tied back into the story. I wish they had incorporated more of Viva’s musical talents into the story, especially considering it takes place in New Orleans - seems like a missed opportunity. Overall, I enjoyed the listen, but it won’t be something I revisit or necessarily recommend to friends.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

    I loved this audible production! The story was lively from start to finish. The performance was very well done. The story was full of adventure, intrigue, humor and mystery. Highly recommended. Young girls will get a kick out of Viva! It's about a 14 year old going to her grandma house in New Orleans for the summer without her mom. Thinking she'd be bored but finding herself trying to solve a mystery.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Joni Janice Mielke

    I really enjoyed listening to this story, complete with its sound effects and musical accompanimenf. Set in the magical city of New Orleans, Louisiana, the atmosphere created in this audiobook's production matches the story perfectly. The main character is a young girl, just entering her teenage years, and her perspective on the world around her (and the people in it) is what you would expect. Her curiosity bolsters her search for answers throughout the novel, and as a listener, I was hooked and I really enjoyed listening to this story, complete with its sound effects and musical accompanimenf. Set in the magical city of New Orleans, Louisiana, the atmosphere created in this audiobook's production matches the story perfectly. The main character is a young girl, just entering her teenage years, and her perspective on the world around her (and the people in it) is what you would expect. Her curiosity bolsters her search for answers throughout the novel, and as a listener, I was hooked and captivated along with her for the whole ride. An excellent audiobook production, all In all, with an outstanding cast and narration from all involved.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Ida Wilcox

    OH MY GOODNESS I just looooooved this. It was fast paced and ingaging and pulls you right into the story. Almost made it believable like I wanted to look up the story of Ms. Mary Mack. LOVE IT

  18. 5 out of 5

    Michael Lewis

    A well-done story for the younger audience I got this one free on Audible originals; it wasn’t for my age group, but the other options looked even worse. A free audiobook is a free audiobook. This is a mystery, and both the story and production hold up great. The tone is kept light, albeit keeping the intrigue up, and the story moves along through a healthy mixture of Deus Ex Machina and decent logic (It’s a good thing you remember a store you only saw for three seconds while eating food at a A well-done story for the younger audience I got this one free on Audible originals; it wasn’t for my age group, but the other options looked even worse. A free audiobook is a free audiobook. This is a mystery, and both the story and production hold up great. The tone is kept light, albeit keeping the intrigue up, and the story moves along through a healthy mixture of Deus Ex Machina and decent logic (It’s a good thing you remember a store you only saw for three seconds while eating food at a street wedding you attended two months ago.). Music and sound effects do a good deal to round out the production, and keeps the narration a lot more vibrant- great for keeping a kid’s attention. The only catch here: The ending doesn’t hold up to scrutiny. If you or your kid think about it, there’s no way in Heck the events could’ve played out according to anyone’s plan, and the amount of Deus Ex Machina suddenly flies through the roof. Turn your brain off for the last chapter; you’ll feel better about it.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Ivy

    Teenage Viva was not looking forward to spending the summer with her grumpy and strict grandmother in New Orleans until one fateful day when her grandmother reads her an article that was just published. “Miss Mary Mack is actually a song about finding her treasure” it read. Her grandmother called the article ridiculous but the more Viva begins to sing the song, the more she believes it could be true. This sets Viva on a wild adventure as she uncovers clues, is Miss Mary Mack really a song about Teenage Viva was not looking forward to spending the summer with her grumpy and strict grandmother in New Orleans until one fateful day when her grandmother reads her an article that was just published. “Miss Mary Mack is actually a song about finding her treasure” it read. Her grandmother called the article ridiculous but the more Viva begins to sing the song, the more she believes it could be true. This sets Viva on a wild adventure as she uncovers clues, is Miss Mary Mack really a song about treasure? Viva is about to find out! I absolutely loved this audiobook! The narrator did such an amazing job at creating a fun tale with the variation of voices, the music, it was like listening to a movie! The tale itself was so entertaining, the fact that it tied in with a classic lullaby we all know and love, Miss Mary Mack, I found myself listening to the tune and wondering myself where The clues in the song would send Viva too next. It’s an amazing and wildly entertaining tale for both Children and adults!

  20. 4 out of 5

    Kristi

    Fourteen year old Viva Durant is visiting her grandmother in New Orleans for the summer. After reading a newspaper article about a hidden treasure the clues to which are hidden in the children's song "Miss Mary Mack." Viva embarks on a secret search to solve the riddle of the song and the origins of the woman who inspired the song. This children's/YA audio book, will not only readers to the culture of New Orleans -- its architecture, idioms, food, jazz, and cemeteries -- it will also teach them Fourteen year old Viva Durant is visiting her grandmother in New Orleans for the summer. After reading a newspaper article about a hidden treasure the clues to which are hidden in the children's song "Miss Mary Mack." Viva embarks on a secret search to solve the riddle of the song and the origins of the woman who inspired the song. This children's/YA audio book, will not only readers to the culture of New Orleans -- its architecture, idioms, food, jazz, and cemeteries -- it will also teach them about the process of historical research. This is a cute and entertaining family story, with an engaging plot. The ending was an unexpected and far-fetched twist, but it could set the story up as a mystery series.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Maryorie Collazo

    I finally finished this audiobook. To be honest I was about to DNF it because I had no time to keep listening and the story seemed too simple. It got better by the end, but I have to say I absolutely hated (yes, that's a strong word but I did it anyways) the excesive amount of sound effects. I'm not sure if it was because it's my first audible original and all of them are like this but I couldn't stop myself from getting a little upset, especially in the singing parts. I mean we get it, Viva I finally finished this audiobook. To be honest I was about to DNF it because I had no time to keep listening and the story seemed too simple. It got better by the end, but I have to say I absolutely hated (yes, that's a strong word but I did it anyways) the excesive amount of sound effects. I'm not sure if it was because it's my first audible original and all of them are like this but I couldn't stop myself from getting a little upset, especially in the singing parts. I mean we get it, Viva remembers things by making them into a song but it was that necessary to repeat it every 5 minutes? (Okey maybe I'm over-reacting but it felt like that). Like I said it got better and I enjoyed it, but is not something I would recommed.

  22. 4 out of 5

    David Doty

    This book was a free Audible Original with my Audible subscription, so I decided to give it a try. It's really a young adult novel, which describes the adventures of 14-year-old Viva Durant, who spends a summer trying to solve a mystery while visiting her grandmother in New Orleans. That said, it was a light, fast, easy read but I enjoyed it. The Audible narration, which includes original music and sound effects, was a nice diversion for a few days on my daily commute. If you're familiar with the This book was a free Audible Original with my Audible subscription, so I decided to give it a try. It's really a young adult novel, which describes the adventures of 14-year-old Viva Durant, who spends a summer trying to solve a mystery while visiting her grandmother in New Orleans. That said, it was a light, fast, easy read but I enjoyed it. The Audible narration, which includes original music and sound effects, was a nice diversion for a few days on my daily commute. If you're familiar with the children's song "Miss Mary Mack," or ever sang it with your kids, you (and your family) would get a kick out of this fun little story.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kendra McIntyre

    Viva Durant is in New Orleans for the summer visiting her grandmother when she comes upon a mystery: is the hand game song "Miss Mary Mack" really a map to long lost family treasure? Viva sets off on an adventure around New Orleans to find Miss Mary Mack's hidden treasure and discovers all the things there are to love about the Crescent City. This was a cute read and my kids (again) really enjoyed it! The jazz music in the background did nothing but enhance the story. I was surprised and Viva Durant is in New Orleans for the summer visiting her grandmother when she comes upon a mystery: is the hand game song "Miss Mary Mack" really a map to long lost family treasure? Viva sets off on an adventure around New Orleans to find Miss Mary Mack's hidden treasure and discovers all the things there are to love about the Crescent City. This was a cute read and my kids (again) really enjoyed it! The jazz music in the background did nothing but enhance the story. I was surprised and delighted by the ending, and I would love to hear more adventures of Viva Durant. I just think this was a very unique premise to write a book from, very creative.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Cora

    Great book for age 10 and older. During a summer visit to her grandmother, 14-year-old Viva finds herself unraveling a mystery based on the "Miss Mary Mack" song. Uncovering the mystery takes her to various places in and around New Orleans. I believe the target audience is listed as 8-10 years old, but I feel like average readers need to be a little older in order to stay focused enough on the story. As an adult, I loved this story. It was fun, adventurous, and historically informative. The Great book for age 10 and older. During a summer visit to her grandmother, 14-year-old Viva finds herself unraveling a mystery based on the "Miss Mary Mack" song. Uncovering the mystery takes her to various places in and around New Orleans. I believe the target audience is listed as 8-10 years old, but I feel like average readers need to be a little older in order to stay focused enough on the story. As an adult, I loved this story. It was fun, adventurous, and historically informative. The characters were interesting and diverse. The clues kept me guessing. Very fun book!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Johannah Gage

    A really fun family-friendly mystery! Great for all ages, and EXCELLENT audio book production -- truly a "radio play" style, with sound effects and music, making it easy to close your eyes and visit New Orleans. Bahni Turpin is quite possibly one of my favorite narrators of all time (and an Audible Hall of Fame narrator).

  26. 5 out of 5

    Marisa Costa Miranda

    It's a YA story, remember me of those books I used to enjoy when I was 11 yo. It lead us in to a summer vacation of a 14 yo girl in her first independent trip to her grandma's home in New Orleans. Show us through a teenager's yes a historic city rich in culture and art. The mystery is well developed with a not totally obvious end.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Wendy

    Very sweet audiobook! I really enjoyed the jazz music in the background, and the story was short and wholesome, which even as an adult I really enjoyed. It was a nice listen in between the heavier, long books. It was free on Audible this month, but if you have children, it would be worth purchasing!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Abby

    I got this as a free download from Audible. Not knowing anything about it, my expectations were pretty low. To my surprise, I was drawn in to a fun, kid-friendly New Orleans mystery. I liked the characters, I enjoyed exploring a new city, and I always wanted to know what happened next. Equally important to the story, the reader was excellent, and so was the production value.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Lisa Loree

    This was a great story for late elementary or middle school age kids. It has a mystery that the protagonist wants to find. Some New Orleans history. Music appreciation. Viva is a young girl who is sent to stay with her grandmother. She does not look forward to the summer but finds herself engrossed in solving the mystery she read about in a news article she and her grandmother read.

  30. 5 out of 5

    InkFire

    This one was surprisingly enjoyable, and even though it strained my suspension of disbelief at times, the story was fun. :) I also really appreciated that the narrator was intimately familiar with the New Orleans and Cajun accents. No awkward fumbling or obvious flubs. I'll file this one in "Smart Kids Fiction" with books like the Artemis Fowl and Half-Moon series.

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