Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Prisoner's Dilemma

The third (and final, at least for now) book in The Mysterious Benedict Society series, we finished The Prisoner's Dilemma a couple weeks ago.  I'm just getting a chance to write it up now.

The Story:  After the end of The Perilous Journey, the four kids in the Mysterious Benedict Society were all sequestered in Mr. Benedict's house.  Everyone is worried about Mr. Curtain, who escaped at the end of the last book.  Mr. Benedict has the Whisperer in the house, though government officials are trying to gain control of it.  Through nefarious means, Mr. Curtain manages to steal the Whisperer, and the group has to find a way to get it back, getting taken prisoner in the process.  To defeat Mr. Curtain, they have to find a way to escape and get the Whisperer back... which is no easy task.  But, for outstanding kids like Reynie, Kate, Sticky, and Constance, anything is possible.

The Good:  The characters we've come to love in the past couple of books are back, and wonderful.  Even better, they are maturing as you would expect growing children.  Constance is gaining in her telepathic powers, which is neat.  The others are learning more about their own unique abilities and strengths, and also learning how to deal with whatever weaknesses they might have. The story is exciting.

The Bad:  Sometimes, this book seemed to drag a little.  It wasn't my favorite of the three.  Constance spends a great deal of the book feeling sick from using her telepathy, and I miss her move vociferous presence.  Still a good read, and I wouldn't skip it, but it isn't as thrilling as the others to me.

The Verdict:  Amazon recommends this for 5-8th grade, and Evalina is in 3rd grade... it would have been too much for her to read on her own, I think, and get a lot out of it.  She did like it, though, and always wanted me to read more.  So, I think it makes a good ending to the trilogy and I would recommend it to fans of the other books, for sure.

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