Dozens of children respond to this peculiar ad in the newspaper and are then put through a series of mind-bending tests. (And you, dear listener, can test your wits right alongside them.)
Only four children - Reynie, Kate, Sticky, and Constance - succeed. Their challenge: to go on a secret mission that only the most intelligent and inventive children could complete. To accomplish it, they will have to go undercover at the Learning Institute for the Very Enlightened, where the only rule is that there are no rules. But what they'll find in the hidden labyrinth of the school's underground tunnels is more than your average school supplies.
First time children's novelist Trenton Lee Stewart takes listeners on an adventure that puts friends, family, and foe to the test. Are you up to the challenge?
©2007 Trenton Lee Stewart; (P)2007 Random House Inc. Listening Library, an imprint of the Random House Audio Publishing Group
"Through its interesting characters, the book...tackles personal concerns: abandonment, family, loyalty, and facing one's fears....Stewart writes with such attention to the intricacies of plot and personality....Smart kids who like Blue Balliet's books are the natural audience for this; but, read aloud, the novel will attract many others as well." (Booklist)
Lot of fun. Very imaginative. Characters you'll fall in love with and hate to leave at the end of the story. Great for adults that think most adult novel/thrillers are pretty boring. Funny. Can't wait for the next in the series...
A very good book for people who like mystery, suspense, puzzles, the way that Trenton writes this book kept me listening for hours on end, Del Roy also did a very nice job on the reading too, overall a very good book!
This will prove to be an instant classic, full of timeless and important lessons, and a joy to all ages.
I am a clay sculptor and an art instructor at a community college. I mostly listen to audiobooks while I work in my home studio.
I read this as an adult (without my kid) on the recommendation of a friend. I liked the story, though it was clearly aimed a little younger. I'd like to share it with my daughter, who is almost 6, but I'm not sure if it would be just a bit much for her at this point.
There were some fun surprises in your basic smart, resourceful kids save the day in a new way without much adult supervision story. I would imagine a midlevel reader (I'm not really sure what age that would be) would get a kick out of solving some of the puzzles just ahead of the kids in the story--or just behind them.
I look forward to reading this and the next with my kid. I'm not sure if I would read the next on my own as an adult, but I would recommend the first to an adult alone.
Absolutely. The characters each have strengths that compliment each other. This makes the Mysterious Benedict Society stronger than its parts.
Roald Dahl books come to mind because the children take the lead in the adventure. In some ways it is like the first Harry Potter, but without the magic and fantasy. The kids are fighting a mysterious evil. They go to a school for the exceptional students. Three of the main characters are orphans, as was Harry Potter. They have a kindly adult watching out for their welfare.
Reynie was my favorite, as he is most like me in his problem solving strategies.
Absolutely. It nearly killed me when each chapter ended and I needed to put it away for the day.
It is so good that I have purchased the next two in the series to read in hardcover. I may have to buy them from Audible as well. I really enjoy the performance of Del Roy. It is like having a favorite adult read an almost hypnotic, mesmerizing story to you.
Yes. It's an adventurous and challenging book for kids. An entertaining story for adults.
I love the character description of No. 2.
an exciting adventure for smart kids
The narrator sounds like Mr Benedict, he has a slight lisp whichannoyed me at first until I got it then well, then I got it.
I enjoyed the story and the waiting room. Parts are a little messy but overall a good listen.
One thing, the kid with the bucket, I just don't buy it.
I would recommend this book without reservation to the right kind of person. I'm an adult and enjoyed the book, but I think this book would set best with the younger, middle school readers. I listened to it with my kids and we all enjoyed it.
What I liked best was the the thing that bothered me most in the beginning. The author writes dialogue in a slightly archaic manner. I believe this is to achieve the "above average" intelligence effect of the children characters. It stood out as odd in the beginning, but by the end I really enjoyed the dialogue between the characters. I liked the sense of danger throughout the children's mission mixed with the faith that they could succeed.
I liked little Miss Contrary and Mr. Benedict's evil brother.
I laughed at several points in the story. Overall it made me feel good.
Like many good books this was a story that grew on me. At first it seemed pretty ordinary as far as "exceptional kids" stories go, but it is saved by some really good character development.
This book was wonderful I am literally listening to it for the seventh time it was so good I have no complaints about the book and the rest of the books.
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