Monday, October 13, 2008

The Maze of Bones; or Stupid Plastic Covers

First, I love, love, love Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson books. Second, The Maze of Bones is a fine book, with lots of very clever lines and a decent plot. Third, I am not a literature elitist. Have Captain Underpants, much stuff not considered for Major Awards.

That said, what the heck? "Read the Book. Play the game. Win the prizes."??? Trading cards included right in the cover, behind a plastic shield that will be destroyed the first time a child looks at it? An interactive web site? This is apparently my line in the sand. It was crossed.

But I have to buy the book. I'll just add it to the rebindery pile now.

Orphans Amy and Dan Cahill have just lost their beloved grandmother, but their problems are even bigger than dealing with relatives and ever-changing nannies. The Cahill family is large and important, and also instrumental in protecting the world from ancient evil. Amy and Dan are left with one clue to solve this problem; so are other members of the family who don't necessarily have good intentions. Traveling from Boston to Paris to Vienna, and having lots of adventures, Amy and Dan try to figure out what role the family has in this mystery, and try to do their best to stay alive while solving it. Slightly reminiscent of the movie National Treasure, This is a fine mystery. Other books in the series (39??) will be by other authors and will, presumably, include more trading cards. *Sigh*

Do not feel compelled to buy Tanya Hurley's Ghostgirl. This has appeared in several girls' magazines, and both of my daughters wanted to read it. It is pretty, with a plastic cover , silver edged pages, and colored decorations, but the story line is thin and the main character whines. Wanted to like it, didn't, and the book will fall apart instantly. I see this more as something girls get for a Christmas present than something for libraries. The web site is impressive. Who thought cut out front covers were a good idea?
Also read Crist-Evans Amaryllis, which is about a boy whose brother is off fighting in Vietnam and is also addicted to heroin. The boy's father is an abusive alchoholic. This was a good book, but still not quite what the boys who like war books are wanting, and so very depressing.


  1. Books that fall apart are depressing!

  2. I felt the same way about Ghostgirl--I wanted to like the main character, but couldn't--I got the feeling that the author didn't like her, either!