Friday, August 12, 2011

The Danger Box by Blue Balliett

Blue Balliett (pronounced bal ee et) first burst on the children's book market with her very successful mystery novel Chasing Vermeer. That was followed by two sequels. In some ways this new book is very much like the other series. In all of them children come across a mystery related to a famous historical artifact that is in peril. Through research and spunk the children solve the mystery and save the artifact. I think this book, The Danger Box, is her best yet. It is not part of the earlier series and has a whole new cast of characters. The main character in this book is fascinating, and really likeable. Zoomy is a 12 year old boy with some kind of mental handicap, maybe Aspergers, and a vision problem. Abandoned by his mother at birth, he lives with his grandparents in a small town. This boy has a challenge living in a world where sudden changed upset him, and he can only see things that are very close to his face. With the help of loving grandparents, who teach him coping skills and build a safe haven around him, he is able to be high functioning. Of course, that is what I, as an adult, see in the book. Younger readers will watch while he, and his new friend, Lorrol, unravel the mystery surrounded an old notebook, and save it from disappearing into the hands of a thief. If you are the kind of parent or teacher who wants their child to learn something from what they read, this is a great choice. It is tough to write a book that is both educational and really and truly entertaining, but Balliett pulls it off here. (306 p)

No comments:

Post a Comment