Genre: Realistic Fiction
Age Group: MG
Publishing Date: June 2, 2015
"Negativity has never been a friend to anyone."
Emily is moving again: to San Francisco, the home of her idol Garrison Griswold. Griswold created Book Scavenger, a game online where books are hid and, using clues, found. Soon Emily learns that Griswold was attacked soon before an announcement about his next big game, which no one knows anything about. When she and her friend James find a book hidden at the same train station that Griswold was attacked, they think that it can be no coincidence. However, when people start to follow them and inquire about the book that they found, Emily and James have to speed up their sleuthing to solve the puzzles before the person who attacked Griswold catches up to them.
What I Liked:
I like how this book talked about books. This may sound odd, but it’s true. I learned more about Edgar Allan Poe and his books. I’ve never read Poe, so this was informative to me. It also mentions Jack Kerouac more than a couple times.
This book reminded me of geocaching. In fact, the Bertman mentioned geocaching as one of her inspirations for Book Scavenger in the Author’s Note along with Letterboxing (Geocaching with stamps) and Book Crossing (a site where you can hide and find books). Anyways, my sister and I were interested in Geocaching once, and it piques my interest every now and then.
Another thing that interested me in this book were the ciphers. At their school there is a cipher contest, and a lot of the Book Scavenger clues are in a cipher. I took a math class once that mentioned ciphers, and my sister took a course on ciphers once, so I’m interested in them.
What I Didn't Like:
Some of the things that happened to the characters in the book didn’t seem realistic to me. I mean, it could have happened, but it would’ve been a long shot. It’s called realistic FICTION for a reason.
At times Emily could be selfish, but everyone has their flaws and that helped the plot. Also, James had a cowlick named Steve. To me, these characters didn’t really seem like they were twelve. They could have been younger. Some kids I know who are eleven are more mature than the characters seemed in this book.
I think that this is a really interesting idea for a book, and the author wrote it well. I enjoyed it and it was engaging.
This book reminded me of Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabbenstein, a book about a bunch of kids who have to find their way out of a library using what is around them. It’s another MG book about books in which the kids have to find clues for more clues for more clues.