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Irene Watson

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The Secret Cave by Lisa Maria Lanno: Book Review
By Irene Watson   
Not "rated" by the Author.
Last edited: Thursday, November 01, 2007
Posted: Thursday, November 01, 2007

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In Lisa Maria Lanno's imaginative and educational children's book, "The Secret Cave." Ronnie and Joe are vacationing in scenic New England with their families over the summer, and during an exploratory hike through the woods, they spot an enormous skull-shaped rock. Near the unusual rock, Ronnie and Joe find an old leather pouch containing a note written in a puzzling rhyme. Although the boys are bent on deciphering the note, they must be careful not to arouse the suspicions of their parents or sisters if they want to keep their exciting discovery all to themselves.

iUniverse (2006)
ISBN 9780595405855
Reviewed by Brianne Plach (age 10) for Reader Views (9/07)

Joe and Ronnie are about to have a summer vacation unlike any other. They are 13-year-old cousins and are looking for fun on the lake and hiking on the many trails. They have a couple of what they would call “pesky” sisters, both older and younger. One day when they are investigating a trail, they make a strange discovery. There are giant rocks forming the shape of a skull. There is a hidden scroll that leads to more clues.

Of course, being adventuresome young boys, they find themselves trying to discover what else lurks in these wooded trails. Day after day, they are getting closer to the solving of the mystery of this place. They don't want their parents to uncover what they have been doing so the older sisters also play a part in the adventure. Will they make it before vacation's end?

From page to page, you will find yourself wanting to not lay down “The Secret Cave” until it is finished. Lisa Maria Lanno is an awesome storyteller. Each chapter builds on the last and you to try to try to figure out the mystery on your own. It’s almost as if you are right there by Ronnie and Joe. Each chapter ends with a set of questions making you think and draw your own conclusions. “The Secret Cave” is a must have for kids who enjoy a great mystery. It’s a novel which appeals to kids like because it is kids who are the main characters. I simply loved “The Secret Cave” and hope that Lisa Marie Lanno continues to write more books like one!

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