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[The authors] found that 60 percent of the kindergartners in neighborhoods where children did poorly in school did not... More
Summary: When they were kids, summers at Great Aunt Adelaide’s used to be fun. But now, cousins Daphne and Ivan are teenagers. Too cool for board games and pretend play. They need their screens for more “sophisticated entertainment.” Tired of the bickering and “I’m bored,” Great Aunt Adelaide sends them out to play in the barn … giving them the first clue in a treasure hunt that turns their summer around. Their quest requires them to push their learning in new ways … with Daphne (the poet) gaining more confidence in math; and Ivan (the math guy) engaging more with literature and writing. This is a fantasy adventure starring two cousins and lots of fun characters.
Type of Reading: bedtime story, family reading, anytime reading, independent reading, read aloud book
Recommended Age: read together: 8 to 12; read yourself: 10 and up
Interest Level: 9 and up
Reading Level: 4.9
Young Reader Reaction: Review pending.
Adult Reader Reaction: I loved this book … anything that encourages kids to unplug is great! The adventure and characters are fun, with plenty of metaphor and symbolism in place names, character traits, and places. The puzzles are just clever enough to make it fun, but in no way frustrating for someone who hasn’t had the subject in school (e.g., Algebra).
Pros: Fun characters - like a Pet Thesaurus (llama) - and two typical teenagers engage kids in this action-packed adventure.
Cons: None, really. The idea of using your imagination v. sticking your nose in a screen may be lost on some kids.
Borrow or Buy: Buy. This is a book that you'll read once and then read again to see if you get the clues faster.
Educational Themes: Although there is plenty of learning woven into the story, this is mostly just a fun read.
Notes: The publicist representing the author donated a copy of this book to the Reading Tub® for review consideration because we provide an independent, unbiased profiles. This book will be given to a nonprofit to help readers in need.