Wednesday, February 17, 2016

The 39 Clues #1: The Maze of Bones by Rick Riordan

This book is the first in the series, and I gave it a rating of five out of five. The grandmother of Dan and Amy Cahill dies, and invites many disconnected relatives to the reading of her will. The will offers them the choice of one million dollars each or the chance to join a race to find a hidden treasure. The treasure will make the finder the most powerful person on Earth. Several families join the contest against their relatives, and Dan and Amy find themselves in the basement of a burning house while looking for the very first clue. The clues are related to Ben Franklin, a relative of the Cahills, and the children must figure out the meanings to the cryptic messages they find along the way. The one thing they know is that they cannot trust anyone! Later in the book, they survive an explosion, poison fingernails, a dart gun, and being lost in the catacombs under Paris.

Each book in the series is written by a different author with Gordan Korman writing the second book and Margaret Peterson Haddix writing another. The book was easy to read and moved along quickly, so most readers should enjoy it. The chase for a hidden treasure always makes for an exciting plot, and the twist of making it a race between family members was creative. How many books have uncles, aunts, nieces, and nephews all competing against each other? And how many of the family members are willing to kill each other? The notion that the most influential people in history are ancestors in the Cahill family tree introduces the ability to include world history into the plot. I enjoyed that angle too, because it makes history part of the clue-gathering. The challenging thing for me is the fact that the entire plot results in the finding of one major clue that will help lead to the final treasure. I'll need to read another thirty-eight books if I intend to discover what everyone is fighting to find.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments unrelated to the books being described will be removed.