Saturday, November 5, 2011

Student Saturday - Skeleton Creek - Patrick Carman

Publisher:  Scholastic
Pages:  144
Genre:  Middle Grade, Mystery
Student Reviewer:  William

The book I chose to review is Skeleton Creek, book 1, by Patrick Carman.  Scholastic press, New York, Copyright 2009, publishes the book.  I believe Patrick Carman has written his best series ever by writing the Skeleton Creek Series.  He is one of my favorite authors and I hope some of you are fans of him too.

In this book, the author uses two main characters named Ryan and Sarah.  During the entire book, Sarah videotapes everything while Ryan records all of the events in the form of notes.  These notes are what you read in the book.  In the book at around every 25 pages, you get to a page with a password and a web address.  On these web pages, you can watch the videos filmed by Sarah and described in Ryan’s notes.  This is a clever way to write a book and makes it realistic and interesting.  The videos are at, then type in the password and watch Sarah’s videos.

This book is a great book but may be scary for some kids aged 11 or 12.  It’s a mysterious and frightening ghost story with a twist.  The setting occurs at a dredge near Seattle, in a town called Skeleton Creek.  The dredge is some sort of old fashioned haunted mining boat where it would dig wet mud out of a lake while looking for gold and what ever wasn’t gold would be thrown back into the water.  The dredge is abandoned at the time of the writing of the story.  There is an underlying theme throughout the book about not listening ton one’s parents, as the fifteen and sixteen year olds were instructed not only to not associate with one another, but also to never go to the dredge.  Not following their parent’s instructions turns out to have some disastrous consequences.

Some of my favorite things I liked about this book were:  it was the story about kids, it took place in an interesting setting, the characters were described very well by the author, the characters had personalities that I can understand and identify with, and the story was mysterious and changing and I never new what to expect next.  The only thing I did not like about this book was that it ended in a cliffhanger.  This is for obvious reasons as it is part of a book series.  I would recommend this book to anyone and middle school because it is an exciting tale of adventure and very fun to read.

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