Friday, March 9, 2012

The Maze Of Bones by Rick Riordan

Recommendation: ***** (5-stars)

When their grandmother passes away Dan and Amy Cahill are devastated and alone in this world. Their parents passed away several years ago and while their grandmother didn't have custody of them, she was the only one who seemed to care for them. Grandmother had a surprise for them though - a chance for the adventure of a lifetime. The Cahill clan is a large family with a mysterious past. Grandmother always said their family had shaped civilization. In order to claim a prize - to be the most influential person in history, they must accept the challenge and follow the 39 clues that they will be given along the way. With nothing left to lose, Dan and Amy accept the challenge and begin a heart-stopping adventure. Only one team will win and to win, their family must fight against each other. Dan and Amy have been instructed to trust no one. Who will win? Who can uncover the clues? This first book in the 39 Clues series is sure to be a hit with your kids!

Positives: Plenty of adventure and mystery to keep the reader on the edge of their seat! There is also some great history lessons thrown in. Have your kids do some research on Benjamin Franklin and check the facts given in the book.

Negatives: None

Talking Points: This book presents an excellent opportunity to talk about several topics. The verses that kept coming to my mind were from I John 2:15-17. These verses talk about not loving the things of the world. The characters in this book were consumed with the things of the world, some more than others, but they were willing to kill their own family members to gain a treasure that will someday burn. Talk to your kids about what things of the world they may love. Help them to see the idols that they worship - the idols of possessions, popularity or acceptance for example. You could also talk about lying and deception. As you read through the story deception is justified as necessary to win the treasure hunt. What does the Bible say about deception (Ex. 20:16, Prov. 12:19, 22, Rev. 21:8)? Ask your kids what it means to be trustworthy and whom do they trust and why.

Age Level: 9-12 years of age

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