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2009 Award
The 39 Clues, Book 5, The Black Circle
( by Patrick Carman, read by David Pittu, Scholastic $19.95 Score: )

For kids hooked on the #1 bestselling series, The 39 Clues, here's the 5th and newest book done in an audio version by the actor, David Pittu. Though done by one actor alone, the reading is animated performed by many voices, with amusing foreign accents, and a lively pace that keeps the listener on the edge of the seat in suspense. Book 5, The Black Circle opens with the arrival of a mysterious telegram that lures 14 year old Amy Cahill and her kid brother Dan into Russia in hopes of finding not just treasures stolen by the Nazis and what happened on the night their parents died. Mixed in with the adventure, Carman takes the opportunity to painlessly serve up some Russian history along the way. Unlike so many series written by a single author, this one was designed from the start to be done by various well-known children's authors. The Black Circle is by Patrick Carmen, author of such series as the Land of Elyon and the Skeleton Creek series. We suspect a lot of kids can read this faster than the four hours of disks will take. But for some reluctant readers, listening to one may inspire further reading...always a good thing. 9-12

Age: Later School Years, Tweens. Review Published: Click here to purchase the product on

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