Horten's Miraculous Mechanisms by Lissa Evans is a fun children's book I have had the pleasure of reading. It was a surprise gift from a friend that arrived in the mail one afternoon with the inscription, "This just seems like your kind of book". It was (grin). The main character is about 10 years old so the ages of interest would probably range a few years above and below that (quite a few years above, in my case) and I have passed it to my 11 year old daughter to enjoy.
This was a fun adventure, racing around town with Stuart Horten (a boy of small stature with the misfortune to have his name be S. Horten) as he discovers his great-uncle's legacy of mechanical magic-show mechanisms.
I loved April, May, and June... not the time span but the triplets who both vex and befriend our intrepid hero. I especially felt sympathetic with April and her fight with her vision and glasses--that's been a pain for me since I was 7!
There is a satisfying 'bad guy' who is actually a lady. And just enough action to keep the story moving along but not so scary that you don't want to read what's coming next. I also think this would do well as a read-aloud for a wide variety of ages. Super fun! Now I'm ready to read the next one, Horten's Incredible Illusions.
p.s. you know you've got the right kind of friends when a surprise book shows up just after you mailed one off to them for their birthday. I got a book for my friend's birthday and that's just awesome!