The blurb reads
When eleven year old Robert Bailey arrived at his family cottage near Lake Michigan, he expected a normal summer vacation: sand castles, thunderstorms, and mosquitoes. After discovering a treasure chest in an online video game, Robert and his best friend, George Ellison, go on a scuba diving adventure into the Great Lake. On their way to the water, they wander into an old red lighthouse. After an accident breaks a hole into the floor, they discover an underground labyrinth of tunnels, harboring a dark secret. Robert and George must figure out how to save the Lake from the tortured mind of an evil genius.
I’ve read a lot of books till now. And I’ve loved stories and storytelling since I was a kid. And this book, has very clearly blown my socks off.
When you read a book, you expect the writer to be a certain age. You can try and reconstruct what you think the author is like, depending on how the writing goes. And this is where the book shocked me again.
The author wrote SHARK TANKED when he passed his 5th Grade. I’ll be damned. I was probably a twat just finding my way around books and I remember having just started writing with a pen in school in 5th grade.
What I loved about this story is how simple it is. It is a perfect enabler for children to bloom their imaginations. What is essential as a child, is to keep working on their imagination so that the child finds comfort and pleasure in his/her thoughts. I remember reading so many books and imagining everything. That still helps me today. It even helps me study. That is where this book is so strong.
A reviewer mentioned that she sat down with her son and read this book for many nights. This is really perfect for some mother-child or father-child bonding.
The story is a summertime adventure which changes the lives of two young boys, Robert and George. The story is told from Robert’s point of view. Summer vacations mean a lot to children, especially if they are travelling somewhere. Many times parents underestimate the impact that travelling has on a child and Robert, in a subtle way, demonstrated how important it was for parents to involve their child in travel.
The other thing I really liked about this book, was how it balanced reality and imagination. It was easy to imagine Robert and George being kids of today’s technology obsessed generation. Yet, the whole story, the way it goes, the whole adventure, is excellent imagination. It is hard to believe that this book is written by a child who is so young!
The whole twist with Robert and George finding a treasure chest was very exciting. I still get some sort of thrill with an adventure and the whole prospect of finding some treasure at the end of it. And a pirate’s chest!! I would still love to find one!
The book also, in a way, reminded me of the ill effects of online gaming. And yet again, the author’s age and maturity stumped me. I mean it is bad enough to have children hooked on to online games and not enjoy the outdoors. But to harness their obsession for the Internet and using it as an evil ploy is sheer genius.
Lets admit it!! Jaws has scarred us to sharks for life! When I think of sharks, I think of the Great White with its huge jaws and thousands of teeth shimmering in the light. Brrr!! Scary prospect! And the way the author handled this was amazing.
Another note I want to add, is about the awesome illustrations. They are extremely cute and I looked forward to reading another chapter, simply to find out what had been illustrated. When I first saw that the book had been illustrated, I thought it was a book with MORE ILLUSTRATIONS and LESS STORY. But I WAS SO WRONG!!
This book has a sizeable length of 131 pages which is almost entirely filled with a fun and exciting story. It took me on a ride to my childhood where I used to read lots and lots of books. And I wish that this book inspires many children to visit libraries, read books and discover a whole new world.
I enjoyed the part where Robert discovers that there is more to the lighthouse that meets the eye. I loved that he wanted to explore and also find out the answers to why the lighthouse was interesting to many people.
The only small part I wish had a little more detail, was about the Evil Genius and I wish David takes this as some healthy feedback. I wished that the Evil Doctor had been given some back story and we had a little more of a glimpse into what he was doing and how he started. This will sort of balance out the story for readers.
Although, I give this feedback because I’m an editor and I look at both sides, it isn’t a comment on how BRILLIANT the book is!! Because it really is!!
I wish I could mail the author and tell him how amazing the book is!! I wish a lot more children were as talented and hardworking as he is. So that we could have many more children getting attracted to the world of books!!
My Rating: 5/5