The Secret of the Sacred Scarab
Reviewed by Dylan James (age 13) for Reader Views (10/09)
Are you ready for Egypt? In “The Secret of the Sacred Scarab,” Adam’s Aunt Isabel invites him and his cousin Justin to go to Egypt with her on a vacation. They go, expecting excitement, but what they get is way overboard! The boys discover something sinister after an archeologist vanishes. He was trying to find the tomb of the Scarab King, a king hidden away with all his riches. Criminals, ancient artifacts, and the wonders of Egypt combine to give Adam and Justin an experience that comes along once in a lifetime.
I can say, without a doubt, that “The Secret of the Sacred Scarab” by Fiona Ingram is exciting. It is an exhilarating adventure, with strange mysteries and dangerous criminals. It has a great storyline, keeping me enthralled throughout the whole book. Boys and girls around ages 10-12 will enjoy this book the most. Boys will probably understand Adam and Justin’s emotions better than girls and so may have a better reading experience.
The one bad thing I noticed considerably was the realism. The things the characters say and do sometimes contradict each other. For instance, although the characters are turning thirteen in a few weeks, they act nothing like teenagers. They act like eleven-year-old boys. If the characters had been eleven, it would have been more realistic. Also, when the adventure really starts, the characters are really in mortal danger. People try to kill them and steal from them several times. Yet throughout all this, the boys do not tell any adult. They keep silent. And even when Aunt Isabel found out about the situation, she simply lets the boys wander through a strange town unsupervised directly after saying they were going straight home. No matter how unsuspicious the people around you look, no adult in their right mind would do that. Luckily, though, the whole book does not contain these incidents. Only specific parts were like this. If you are not reading with a reviewer’s eye, you will probably not even notice them.
Overall, I loved “The Secret of the Sacred Scarab” by Fiona Ingram and I am glad I read it.