September 30, 2009

Book Review: Mystery of the Roman Ransom

*I wrote this on the 24th of September*

I just finished reading Mystery of the Roman Ransom by Henry Winterfeld, the first on my list for the Fall Into Reading contest, and it was soooo good! It’s set in ancient Rome and it is about seven young boys (Mucius, Caius, Publius, Julius, Flavius, Rufus and Antonius), their teacher (Xantippus), a slave named Udo, and a whole bunch of other fun characters.

It all starts when the boys buy a slave for their teacher’s 50th birthday (he’s really 72), but it turns out that Udo “is actually a secret courier [who is a good guy], running for his life; and the message he’s carrying requests the assassination of a Roman senator- the father of one of the boys. But whose?!” (From the back of the book). Udo says that he doesn’t know who it is and that he overheard the bad guys that the letter is for say they will kill him when he delivers it! When the boys find the letter that Udo lost, they figure out from the code that it’s Caius’s father, Vinicius, that is to be killed. Caius, unfortunately, runs off to tell the prelate so he can protect Vinicius but gets captured by a one-eyed ex-gladiator, one of the bad guys, who imprisons Caius in the catacombs!

I won’t tell the rest of the story; you have to read it for yourself. And if you do ask me what happens next I’ll just tell you that the “Purple Bunny” swoops in and saves everyone. My parents say something like that every time my brother & I ask questions about a movie we have never seen before. If we wrote down all the adventures of the “Purple Bunny” we would have a whole book! Hey that gives me an idea... :)

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