If you dare to open The Danger Box
, you’ll find a book filled with secrets. A mysterious billionaire known only as “Mr. Zip” discovers a priceless scientific treasure that had been stolen from its owner many years ago. He devises an elaborate plan to transport the danger box across the world to his estate. The contents of the box were to be kept secret – only Mr. Zip knew what was inside. But before the box could be delivered to its final destination, Mr. Zip drops dead from a heart attack. The danger box is stolen (again!) and ends up in the tiny town called Three Oaks, Michigan where it falls into the hands of a twelve-year-old boy named Zoomy.
“Secrets are only good when you want to keep them.”
- Zoomy Chamberlain, last known owner of the danger box
Zoomy is no ordinary boy. Abandoned by his alcoholic dad when he was a baby, Zoomy is raised by his grandparents, Gumps and Gam. He has no friends his age, is almost legally blind, and is slightly autistic. Zoomy writes everything that ever happens to him in a notebook - like the dreadful day his dad shows up in Three Oaks driving a stolen truck with the mysterious danger box inside it. After Zoomy opens the box, he discovers a whole lot more than treasure inside; he finds true friendship, the true meaning of family...and that sometimes people who lose priceless treasures want them back!
So what is the mysterious treasure in the danger box? You’ll have to read almost 100 pages to find out it is the long lost journal of a world famous scientist (see Note
below). Internationally bestselling author Blue Balliett (who also wrote the YA mystery Chasing Vermeer
), leaves clues and a secret code so that readers can figure out the identity of the journal owner. Since the chapters are short (sometimes only one page long), The Danger Box
is an easy, fun read.
If you’re looking for another good mystery for young adults, try The 39 Clues: The Maze of Bones
by Rick Riordan or The Name of This Books is Secret
by Pseudonymous Bosch (see links below).
Balliett based this novel on a real mystery from the life of Charles Darwin, the scientist who published the controversial book Origin of Species
regarding his theory of natural selection and evolution. To find out more about this fascinating author, visit her website at http://www.blueballiettbooks.com/