In the book, 11-year-old Emily has just moved to San Francisco, and is dreading starting over at a new school. However, she is enthusiastic about getting to play Book Scavenger, the online book-hiding game, where it originated. On top of that, she will be able to participate in her idol’s (Garrison Griswold) secret new game. That is, until she hears that he’s in critical condition after being mugged.
Several days later, she and her newly befriended neighbor, James, discover a book that they believe is the beginning of Griswold’s game. While in the process of following the clues and cracking the codes, the two friends learn that someone else is after the book as well, and tension starts to build between them. Emily desperately wants to continue, despite the threat of the other people interested in the game, while James fears for their safety and wants to just hand it over. Will they succeed in completing the game or have the book stolen from them before they can finish it? More importantly, will their friendship survive the game?
The book was very good and kept my attention throughout. While meant for younger kids, older kids would enjoy it as a quick read too, and I’d recommend it for all ages. The story itself was interesting, but the added elements of puzzles, ciphers, and treasure hunts really gave the book and classic mystery-type story a new and engaging twist. It’s definitely a must read, especially for anyone who likes puzzles or mysteries.
Plus, the story isn’t over yet. Bertman plans on making this story into a trilogy. The next book will be titled, “The Unbreakable Code,” and if you like these books, there will be more (a whole new story and characters) coming after the trilogy.