by Scott Clements **** 4 Stars
Trip Montgomery has no idea what is in store for him when he finds the dusty old trunk hidden under the floorboards in his mom’s attic. The trunk reveals a series of mysteries that send him on the greatest adventure of his life. Will his best friend Josh and his new friend Sarah be able to help Trip solve the clues that lead to the greatest treasure ever known to man? Or will Trip’s obsession with the treasure drive him deep into the disorienting dreamland of his great grandfather Pappy?
Gasparilla’s Treasure is a worthy adventure read for middle-graders. I’ll try to offer some useful comments without letting out any spoilers. The three central characters are your typical kids. The main character, Trip, provides the link to the background story that leads to the adventure. Josh is his goofy friend, and Sarah is a newbie to their school.
As the story develops, so too does the friendship between the three characters. There is a common enemy, Eli the bully, and the three need to work together (well at least Josh thinks he’s helpful) to solve the mystery that has been unsolved for generations. For those of you who are wondering, there wasn’t excessive violence, offensive storylines or actions, so I think it’s a good wholesome story for the middle grade target audience.
My favourite character was Josh, the goofball, as he added some comic relief to the story, by just being himself. He lingered in the adventure without having to actually contribute much, so he was free to fulfil his love of video games along the way. My least favourite character was Eli, the bully, not due to the writing, but just for the fact that I hate bullies. This indicates to me that the author has been successful in portraying the baddie character to the reader.
Overall, I enjoyed this adventure and it kept my interest from cover to cover. There were hints of more to come – a second book perhaps? I’d be pleased if there were more adventures to read in the future.
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