About the Book: You don't choose the book--the book chooses you. Sixth grader Spencer Lemon has a degenerative eye disease--and he's rapidly losing his eyesight. So he has no idea why he was chosen to guard Pandora's Book. When Ed, the old guy at the nursing home, hands over the book, he doesn't get a chance to explain any of the rules to Spencer. Spencer only knows that the book contains famous dead people--people who can be brought back to life. Spencer and his autistic best friend, Gregor, soon figure out how to get people out of the book, but not how to get them back in. Then Ed disappears, and a strange man shows up on Spencer's doorstep--and he seems to know a lot about Spencer and about Pandora's Book. Is he one of the bad guys? Or is here to help Spencer unravel the secrets of the book? But there are others interested in Pandora's Book, others who might use its powers to take over the world. And it's up to Spencer, along with Gregor and Ed's mysterious (and cute) granddaughter Mel, to protect the book--and save the world.
About the Author: Erin Fry has a couple of things she would consider passions: reading, writing, running, and teaching. And though it has taken a while to get here, she now gets to do all four of them--and get paid!
For over a decade, Erin has taught 6th grade language arts and history at a middle school in southern California. She also coaches cross country at her school each fall, which gets her in shape to run a half marathon or marathon every year. Since 2003, she has reviewed children's books for Publishers Weekly. This past year, she and a fellow curriculum developer co-founded Curriculum Specialists (http://curriculumspecialists.blogspot.com), through which they create common core-aligned Teacher's Guides for authors and publishers. Her first middle grade novel, LOSING IT, was published in 2012 by Amazon Children's Publishing. Her second novel, SECRETS OF THE BOOK, hits shelves in 2014 while her first YA serial, THE BENEFACTOR, released in October, 2013. She lives with (and frequently runs alongside) her husband, three children, and their golden Retriever.
You can find curriculum guides for most of her books and learn more at www.erinmfry.com.
My Review: Nowadays, every time I read a book with a beginning, a middle and an end, I love it. There is a trend among authors to write only series or trilogies and the old fashion way of writing a complete story in one volume is fading quickly.
This book was written with a young adult audience in mind. It is very entertaining and the plot is simple and will get you hooked on the development of the story, cheering for our young group of 6th graders. Spencer and Gregor are best friends. Gregor has a level of autism and Spencer has a degenerative eye disease that will ultimately make him blind. Spencer's mom makes him go with her on all community service/charity she goes. One of those places is the Everlasting Home for Seniors, where Spencer meets Ed, a senior guy that has a very special book, called Pandora's Book. It is a magical book, that brings to life some famous dead people it has on its pages. Spencer meets Babe Ruth, Albert Einstein and Marilyn Monroe in one of his visits to Ed. Ed gives Spencer the book, as he thinks Spencer is the new guardian of the book. But Spencer cannot keep the secret from his best friend Gregor and soon they summoned Socrates, but the problem is that Spencer still do not know how to use the book, so he does not know how to send Socrates back to his book's page. And things start to get really out of control, when they found out that Ed disappeared before teaching how to use the book and his granddaughter Mel appears from nowhere trying to help them to find Ed. Other characters like Al Capone, Theodore Roosevelt, President Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Jr. make the story very alive and the action will not let you put the book down till you turn the last page.
I recommend this book to all young adults that appreciate action books and are willing to be entertained for some hours. It took me around 5 hours to read the whole book.
Amazon.com was kind enough to send me this book through their Vine Program for reviewing and I was not requested to provide a positive review. Opinions expressed here are my own.
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