Tuesday, January 5, 2010

So what do we think? 39 Clues book 3: The Sword Thief

Lerangis, Peter. (2009) The 39 clues book 3: The sword thief. ISBN-10: 0545060435 Please read the criteria and full review at http://www.litland.com/

The book begins with an adequate overview of the situation, building further details into the conversations and self talk so that, with few words, the reader is oriented to the context of the series. That is very helpful. But wait, has a poser taken over Amy? This shy, intelligent teenager is suddenly saying the word “like” so many times it seems the author is trying too hard to be “acceptable” to an audience. What audience was intended to read this? We want an authentic Amy not an imitation of what adults “think” kids are like! Is this younger generation so looked down upon that authors cannot give us an intelligent character to enjoy? Fortunately the answer is yes! So don’t let these first few pages turn you off to the book. Just read a bit further...

Chapter 1 starts off with great action. The first two chapters re-introduce many characters and the family pride returns. And Amy can speak intelligently again! We have returned to the story and characters that we grew to love from Book 1. And they remain throughout the book so that, by its end, these few weaknesses of chapter 1 are entirely forgotten. The humor woven throughout its tapestry leaves the reader light of heart while enjoying the fast-paced action. Fun!

Final thoughts:

Although Book 3 is shorter than its predecessors, it is well written in that it is rich in both action and character development. The characters have become real again, easy to embrace. The action is surreal yet described in a manner that the reader feels as if in the thick of it. Through Uncle Alastair’s self-talk, we see glimpses into his childhood and hidden emotions, rendering his character multi-dimensional. What may be presumed “bad guys” are now being unveiled to the reader in more true form. Good character development, great humor, exciting action...an excellent book!

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