Reading level: Ages 9-12
Hardcover: 220 pages
Publisher: Scholastic Press; 1st edition (December, 2008)
What to expect: Mystery, Action, Suspense, Babysitter, Brothers and Sisters, Family, Orphans, Travel
Here is what I had to say after reading book one: Calling all reluctant readers! Action, mystery, suspense, and orphans, all mixed into a well-balanced, fast read. Not to mention the interactive website and collectible clue cards. Maze of Bones is the first book of a ten book series written by ten different well-known authors. Rick Riordan (author of The Lightning Thief) has set the pace well, creating a suspenseful adventure and scattering it with secretive clues. Riordan has outlined the rest of the series, but it will be completed by the 9 other authors.
Note: A discovery I made is that the books will be completed by 5 authors, each writing 2 of the books in the series.
Author number 2 of 5, Gordon Korman, transitions readers smoothly into book two, One False Note, and manages to strengthen the readers relationship with the characters. As the Cahill siblings continue on their journey to win the race by solving the mystery of all 39 clues, determination and self discovery are key themes. Knowing your grass roots, extended family and all, can be a huge part of understanding one’s self. The Cahill’s certainly have an exciting and powerful family, including Benjamin Franklin (book one), and a whole branch of artistic members, including the historical figures Mozart and Picasso (who both appear in book two).
Remaining true to the readers, Korman mixes history with a dash of hip-hop (Snoop Dog) and current themes to hold their interest levels. He has packed in plenty of action and suspense, not to mention a bunch of geographical locations. From Paris to Germany to Austria and then Italy, readers truly are presented with a nice tasting of culture and scenery as the pace of the race for clues quickens.
Publisher’s synopsis: THIS JUST IN! Amy and Dan Cahill were spotted on a train, hot on the trail of one of 39 Clues hidden around the world. BUT WAIT! Police report a break-in at an elite hotel, and the suspects ALSO sound suspiciously like Amy and Dan. UPDATE! Amy and Dan have been seen in a car . . . no, in a speedboat chase . . . and HOLD EVERYTHING! They’re being chased by an angry mob?!?
When there’s a Clue on the line, anything can happen.
Add this book to your collection: The 39 Clues: Book Two: One False Note
Read our review of The 39 Clues: Book One: Maze of Bones
Visit the website: www.the39clues.com
Have you or your children been reading and playing along? Let us know what you think, leave a comment below.