Book: Mysterious Benedict Society & the Riddle of Ages (2019)
Author: Trenton Lee Stewart
Genre: MG, Adventure
Rating: 4 stars
Basic plot: The Mysterious Benedict Society is back. The kids are older, and this time, they have a new recruit: five-year-old Tai. Their challenge is to break into the old institute-turned-prison to rescue Mr. Benedict and his criminal twin brother from certain death. But, with McCracken and the rest of the Ten Men close on their heels, it’s not going to be easy.
1) What fun to be back with Reynie, Kate, Sticky, and Constance. Even though they are considerably older. (From what I can guess is that the three older ones are around 16 or 17; Constance would be around 7.)
2) Tai was a nice addition. I was quite skeptical about him at first, and at times he was a little “too cute”. But he fits in nicely with the plot, especially the part at the end. I think it was also good to get another kid into the story since the three older ones have grown up so much.
3) Lots of riddles and adventure in this one. I’m horrible at solving riddles, but I do enjoy seeing the Society figure them out. (Or should I say, Reynie is the one that always figures them out.)
4) Milligan has a nice little cameo. Probably one of my favourite parts of the story. I wish he was in it a little more, but I understand why he wasn’t.
5) One of my least favourite developments of this series has been Constance’s telepathic abilities. However, I didn’t actually mind it in this story. I felt it worked really well within the plot. And I will say, overall, I have really grown to like Constance as a character. Sure, she’s moody. But she’s interesting. And not quite as contrary as she is in the other books.
WHAT’S NOT COOL…
1) Little things didn’t pan out. [*Slight SPOILER] Like the mysterious letter ‘M’ that Tai talks about at the beginning of the book. I was WAITING for that to actually be something. It wasn’t. Or S.Q.’s big feet? I’m not sure why that kept be brought up when it didn’t do anything for the climax of the story. [End spoiler] Not a huge problem. Just a disappointment because it didn’t live up to my expectation.
My rating is 4 Stars (out of 5) – I was excited when I first found out about the existence of this book about a year ago. BUT, I was also skeptical. However, I was pleasantly surprised. This book had all the fun worthy of a Mysterious Benedict Society book. The kids are older (and really, with the exception of Constance and Tai, no longer “kids”) but their characters remained true. And I liked how Stewart was able to bring together all the events of this book.
Have you read this book? What are your thoughts? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!
Note: I’m posting this for Greg Pattridge’s Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday…