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The Aldens find a castaway on a South Sea island. How did he get there and who is he?


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The Aldens find a castaway on a South Sea island. How did he get there and who is he?

30 review for Blue Bay Mystery

  1. 5 out of 5

    Meredith Buchanan

    Last time the children knew Grandfather was up to something because he seemed angry. In an interesting (I’m using the adjective loosely here) change of events, this time they know something is up because he’s happy – he’s joking with Benny, and it’s an event to be remarked on and remembered and followed closely. At length. It really gives you some insight into day-to-day life with Grandfather, when any hint of emotion is an anomaly to be noted. I can only imagine that his normal state of being i Last time the children knew Grandfather was up to something because he seemed angry. In an interesting (I’m using the adjective loosely here) change of events, this time they know something is up because he’s happy – he’s joking with Benny, and it’s an event to be remarked on and remembered and followed closely. At length. It really gives you some insight into day-to-day life with Grandfather, when any hint of emotion is an anomaly to be noted. I can only imagine that his normal state of being is a kind of catatonic, drugged out bliss—with blank eyes and a frozen expression of nothingness. This time Grandfather has surprised his brood of orphans with a trip to the South Seas! Not on a cruise ship, as you’d imagine, but instead on a freighter, probably running illicit cargo to Tahiti. Grandfather had planned on just taking them to San Francisco and then he considered Tahiti (probably to sell as house slaves), but THEN his friend tells him about first mate Lars Larson (Gertie’s not too creative about naming people. It’s probably where Benny gets his skillz. Remember Potato Camp?) Lars got shipwrecked on this deserted island for an indeterminate amount of time, and it was so much fun (!) that he wants to go back FOR VACATION. I think Lars has PTSD. Sidebar – in another interesting insight of Life with James Henry (LWJH from now on), when the kids come in to meet Lars for the first time, Grandfather announces that he’s their friend from now on. He just decrees it so, and no one bats an eye. Let’s take a poll about why we think that he declares Lars their friend, so saith JH, let it be written instead of letting them decide if they actually want to be friends with this middle-aged stranger who has appeared in their living room and has whispered conversations with their grandfather behind closed doors. He calls them all “Mr.” and “Miss,” so he knows his place. This is probably why they don’t have more friends. Anyway, what better place to send your grandchildren than a deserted, UNCHARTED island where no one can find them? And for some reason Mike Wood is also going—apparently Benny is the only one that has friends. In Surprise Island, all the other children had at least one other friend, but I think that they were just rentals. Grandfather has been corresponding with Mike (but not his mother, I presume) about the trip–Benny mentions in passing that he had noticed his childlike scrawl on incoming envelopes, but I guess nothing about Grandfather exchanging letters with a seven year old seemed mysterious? Aren’t these kids supposed to be inquisitive? Grandfather is a TYCOON, and nothing about him makes it seem likely that he’d have any interest in being Mike’s pen pal. Nonetheless, apparently they’ve been corresponding for months. I suspect that Mike has some dirt on Grandfather, possibly something about an entire town suffering from uranium poisoning, and JH is trying to placate him with a fabulous vacation. Perhaps a vacation where a small boy could easily go astray and get left behind. Or shipwrecked. Or eaten by the sharks that abound in Blue Bay. PROBLEM SOLVED. The most exciting part of the trip is that they will all be missing school—but Grandfather doesn’t want them to miss out on education—he knows that his grandchildren are too dense to catch up with the rest of the class if they’re out for more than two days. So he has their teachers create unique textbooks for each child, individually bound, color-coded, and stamped with their names in gold. REAL GOLD. Of course, the books are violet for Violet, red for Benny, green for Henry, and blue for Jessie, because everything they own is one single shade. Even their suitcases follow their stringent color guidelines. Do you think Grandfather can’t tell them apart unless they are wearing their assigned color? Or he’s just OCD and likes everything to match? It’s very Captain Von Trappe of him, minus the piercing whistle. He obviously chooses color coding instead since the whistle would probably aggravate his hangover and you can see colors when you just barely open your eyes. Naturally, Grandfather flies the children to the ship on his private jet. Mike Wood is waiting unaccompanied on the airstrip, his mother probably sick with worry back at the mine, unable to make a single pie. Frozen pie crusts and cans of filling are going to waste back at Mike’s Mother’s Place. We’re assuming that the handsome Mr. Carter took care of brokering this deal on Grandfather’s behalf, and he’ll also be in charge of making sure that Mike keeps quiet when he gets back. I’m pretty sure that he is in charge of doing JH’s dirty work. Every morning Grandfather rings a school bell, and every day, fortuitously, whatever the children see in the ocean is exactly what is outlined that day in their specialized textbooks. It’s like Grandfather knows the future. OR CONTROLS IT. He’s also arranged for them to look at some seaweed. Joe probably pointed out how much they enjoyed naming the different kinds of seaweed (red seaweed, pink seaweed, etc., not the actual names) back on Surprise Island, and Grandfather uses this as an excuse to distract them while he occupies himself elsewhere on the ship. “Kids! Look at this bag of seaweed! I’ve brought a microscope so you can look at it UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL-LIKE to be sure that you’ve assigned the proper colors to each bit. Then you can divvy it up amongst yourselves based on the Alden Family Color Coding Scheme.” The most exciting part of the trip comes when they get to help Lars pack the lifeboat for the trip to the island. “OMG we LOVE TO PACK THINGS!” Jessie shouts with a maniacal gleam in her eyes. “Dry milk! Canned meat! Canned beans! Things in cans are MY FAVORITE!” Benny exclaims with glee. This is the part of the story where I become certain there are drugs somewhere on that boat. Don’t even get me started on Benny and Mike getting in a fight about who can eat more bread. The group heads out into the lifeboat and makes it to the island in about three seconds. Lars warns them not to swim in the bay because they will get eaten by killer sharks. This is, of course, the bay that they’ve all just been neck-deep in dragging the boat to shore. I am disappointed to realize that Grandfather is (uncharacteristically) accompanying them on this trip. What?? The Aldens don’t do things as a family! This is Grandfather’s summertime of debauchery! There is only one explanation—Grandfather is trying out a cheap rehab program. Unwise, as being around his grandchildren 24/7 will surely drive him to drink. Fortunately, there is sugarcane on this island, so if he gets desperate he can always try to rig up a still out of some shells and a coconut husk. The whole point of the vacation is that the kids like to make “something of nothing” – you can’t make this stuff up – and what better way to apply themselves than to help old JH get his fix? Predictably, the next twenty pages describe dinner. You wouldn’t think that amount of writing would be necessary to describe picking bananas and opening cans of beans—but you’d be wrong. Everyone decides to carve themselves a spoon, except Violet of course who is too delicate. And then Jessie finds the perfect place to wash the dishes. You can tell this is a real vacation, because Jessie lets everyone wash their own dishes. She is really taking it easy. Remember her despair about washing the dump dishes in cold water? By now she’s decided that it’s totally fine to eat out of shells that they found on the beach and rinsed in the ocean. A little fish poo never hurt anyone. It’s all organic, right? She and Violet are pretty excited about having washed them in salt water – maybe they think that salty=clean? Obviously their specialized textbooks didn’t contain details about how too much salt leads to heart disease. Or maybe they did, and they’re trying to send Grandfather to an early grave out in the wilds of the uncharted Tahiti-adjacent Pacific. If they’re smart, they’ll cut Lars in on the deal for a small percentage of their inheritance. The next morning Grandfather wakes up craving his fix. Gertrude uses the euphemism ‘coffee’ but we all know the truth. Luckily for him, Violet only lives for other people’s approval, and she has smuggled some in. How delightful. Now Grandfather will never get clean. In the meantime, Violet has nothing to hem since her secret package was full of coffee, and I’m willing to bet that it’s driving her to distraction. I hope that Grandfather appreciates her sacrifice when he sobers up and sees her unraveling the blankets for thread. After breakfast, the children go exploring, and unsurprisingly find an enormous, Easter-island type statue in about five seconds. This priceless archeological find hardly phases our heroes, who are mostly just interested in finding tidal pools and colored seaweed. Benny does make a special note of a drinking shell next to the spring, though, so he’s got his priorities in order. No one even thinks about how much their “archaeologist” cousins Joe and Alice would love this Easter Island-esque find, either. Joe practically peed his pants with excitement about the arrowheads on Surprise Island. Imagine how he’d feel about a giant statue? Of course, he and Alice are probably making it rain back at Alden Manor while they’re staying there unsupervised, so they could probably care less about the statue. Now that I think about it, they didn’t really care about the arrowheads, either, as evidenced by the whole dynamite scenario. In the next ten minutes, about fifteen mysterious things have happened, including an unripe coconut falling from a tree, and the discovery of what appears to be installation artwork in a tide pool. If that wasn’t enough, the next day they find a turtle shell with the exact same design carved into it. Instead of preserving the mysterious artwork, the Aldens immediately utilize it as cookware. Art shmart. Take a bath hippie, the Aldens would say. They have fish stew to make, and they need a kettle. I personally love how they decided to make fish stew long before anyone found the shell, which is just exactly what they need. THE PUPPETMASTER STRIKES AGAIN. The group goes down to the old fishing hole to catch the ingredients for their new turtle kettle—but Lars only has enough fishing lines for the boys. It’s just as well, Grandfather points out, the girls probably would mess it up anyways. It’s best to just let them watch from the rocks while all four boys try to catch the same grouper trapped in a tide pool. Sporting! Eventually someone (Henry maybe? I drifted off there for a bit) lands the grouper, and we can go back to the huts. An extensive description of cleaning and cooking the fish follows. Riveting stuff, this. Nothing mysterious happens during the food preparation. Gertie doesn’t like to get sidetracked when meals are involved, which is a position I can get behind. However, as soon as she’s described every detail of stew prep (dried onions!), clues start popping up fast and thick again. Next, there’s a myna bird that says “Hello, Peter!” Benny strains his mental faculties and deduces that Peter must have been the person who taught the bird to talk. You really can’t get anything by this kid. He’s probably been drinking a lot of canned milk, so he’s at the top of his game. They spend the next chapter updating us on the stew preparation, discussing Peter, and planning their next meal. Henry thinks it will be pretty exciting if Peter is on the island right now. Because that’s not creepy. They’ve only been there for two weeks without seeing anyone. Violet is worried that it’s a cannibal, but Grandfather reasonably points out that cannibals don’t speak English. Apparently it’s a mutually exclusive thing, so they’re all safe. Old JH can be quite helpful when he’s lucid. I’m fairly certain that Violet’s special textbook covered cannibals extensively because this is not the last we’ll hear about them. Clearly no one screened the book for content that wouldn’t upset her delicate constitution. Heads will roll. Grandfather does not like it when Violet is upset. Speaking of rolling heads, Mike preempts Benny and renames Blue Bay Shark Bay, lest they forget about the danger lurking beneath the lovely blue water. I expected a knock-down, drag-out fistfight over this coup, but Benny doesn’t say anything. He made a huge to-do about not knowing that Mike could swim, but he’s fine with him taking over giving things stupid and obvious names? That’s Benny’s trademark. I think Benny’s been hitting the sauce when Grandfather isn’t looking. Nothing else could explain how chill he is about the situation. Jessie is always worried that Benny is going to pitch a fit when something doesn’t suit him, so I suspect that he throws tantrums on a regular basis. Several chapters of island fun follow. Then one day Henry declares that he doesn’t want to nap, and in true codependent Stepford fashion, the other kids jump right on that bandwagon. You know they don’t like to be separated for any length of time. Even Mike has relinquished his independence and sense of individuality by now. Since there are a lot of mysterious things going on, they decide to head inland into the untamed wilderness. Grandfather and Lars both know that this is foolish since there is clearly someone loose on the island, but they don’t want to send Violet into hysterics because she’s afraid of cannibals again, so they wave goodbye and send the children merrily on their way without even a machete to “clear away brush.” Actually, that’s probably wise. I can totally see Violet sobbing her eyes out over the mutilation of those poor, helpless plants and their displacement from their home on the jungle path. Anyway, Grandfather is having his nap come hell or high water, so he sends Lars after the kids to keep an eye on them. This seems surprisingly protective until you realize that Lars is in the middle of mending one of the huts and he’s probably making a lot of noise and keeping Grandfather from getting his beauty sleep. Meanwhile, the kids are traipsing through the wilderness without a care in the world. They revisit the Easter Island statue so that they can go rock climbing on the priceless artifact, having totally forgotten Grandfather’s earlier warning about needing to avoid broken legs since they’re miles from medical help. Of course, Jessie has probably taken some sort of first aid course as a part of her effort to be the world’s greatest homemaker, and she’s likely anxious to try out her new skillset, so maybe she’s encouraging the others to flirt with danger. I kept waiting for Indiana Jones to spring out of the woods and yank them off of the statue with his whip (this book would be AMAZING if Indy was hiding in the woods), but no such luck. All of the other Aldens scramble up the rocks, leaving poor little Violet to fend for herself. Fortunately, Mike remembers that she is a special snowflake melting in the tropical heat, and he helps her climb up. I’d like to point out that Mike is probably seven years old and Violet is around twelve, but from all the description of how strong Mike is, you’d think that Arnold Schwarzenegger in his Conan days is helping her destroy archaeological evidence instead of her kid brother’s best friend. “OMG YOU GUYS. There is a STUMP over here on this mountain and I know it didn’t grow here because there are stones all around the edges to hold it in place and also we are sitting on a slab of rock!!!” Detective Benny explains the obvious to everyone else, as usual. “What an AMAZING observation! I WONDER WHAT IT’S FOR???” “INDEED. Why would there be a stump here that didn’t grow here but it is so obviously here for a reason?” Thankfully, Henry cuts this tiresome babble off by standing on the stump. Lo and behold, he finds a cave that is an EXACT REPLICA of the dear old boxcar, right down to Benny’s pink cup. Hello, Puppetmaster. We’ve missed you. Benny sees something leaping through the trees and he goes tearing off through the jungle after it. In a scene remarkably reminiscent of his wandering off into the woods after the hermit in The Yellow House Mystery, no one notices that he’s gone. In this case, it’s even more ridiculous since they’re halfway up a mountain on a ledge that I’m assuming he has to leap off of in order to track a possible cannibal in the trees. He’s also off of any discernible path, so I’m thinking that he’s making a considerable amount of noise as he crashes through the wilderness. This should give you an idea of how engrossed everyone is in watching Mike try out the bed in the boxcar cave. Anyway, Benny is following the mystery man in the trees (sadly not the original Mystery Man, Mr. Carter. That would have been an amazing twist. “Oh, hi, guys. It’s me, Mr. Carter, JH’s personal uranium hunter and general fixer. I’m just hiding here in the trees masquerading as a cannibal and living in a cave eerily reminiscent of your former home”) when he falls into a giant brush-covered pit. Most people would be alarmed to be trapped in a pit on a remote island possibly populated by cannibals after having run off into the jungle without telling anyone where they were going. Not Benny, though. “Oh, I seem to have fallen into a deep pit. Lucky it isn’t filled with snakes.” Okay, I lied. He’s actually glad it’s not full of water, but that’s stupid since water would break the fall and he’d be closer to the top. If he was concerned about crocodiles or piranhas, then yeah, maybe, but just water? Don’t be an idiot, Benny. Fortunately, a shaggy head pops over the rim in just a few minutes. “Hi, Benny! I’m Peter. I see you’ve fallen into my trap. Instead of just coming out to meet potential rescuers after determining that you weren’t cannibals or rapists, I’ve been watching you from the trees and stealing your food for weeks. Now that I’ve caught you and you seem to be unharmed, it seemed like a good time to introduce myself.” Most people would be alarmed that they’ve been living in close proximity to a stalkery Peeping Tom-esque thief for the past few weeks, but Benny is totally nonchalant about it. Sneaking Grandfather’s booze is really taking the edge off. Also, what was Peter planning on trapping in this giant hole? Lions? Tigers? Bears? Lars has gone on and on about how there aren’t any dangerous animals on the island, so it seems like a waste of effort to dig the hole. Also, you’d be a sitting duck for predators while you were digging it, so you’d be dead long before the trap became useful if there were any maneaters on the island. Also, what did he dig this huge pit with? Shells? This whole business stinks, and not just because Peter hasn’t had a bath in six months. I’m hypothesizing that Peter, so long removed from social interaction, felt he needed an ice breaker. Walking into their camp and introducing himself was too intimidating, but he felt that greeting them after they fell into a giant hole that he created would be the perfect opportunity to make polite introductions. At least in that scenario, they’d be at his mercy. Peter and Benny become best friends in a normal, two minute span, and the group leads him back to their huts. Despite being shipwrecked for less than seven months, and only alone for three weeks (read the rest of the review here: http://rampantreads.wordpress.com/201...)

  2. 5 out of 5

    C.O. Bonham

    Really liked this one, it felt more like the first book in the series did. The Alden's are stranded on a tropical island. They need to get their own food, make their own dishes and even build their own shelters. This was no shipwreck though, they did it on purpose. As always Grandfather knows how his grand-kids love to fend for themselves so this time around he orchestrates a tropical getaway for them. This book is special though because unlike the previous books this time Grandfather Alden comes Really liked this one, it felt more like the first book in the series did. The Alden's are stranded on a tropical island. They need to get their own food, make their own dishes and even build their own shelters. This was no shipwreck though, they did it on purpose. As always Grandfather knows how his grand-kids love to fend for themselves so this time around he orchestrates a tropical getaway for them. This book is special though because unlike the previous books this time Grandfather Alden comes along for the adventure. After five books of the Grandfather being almost like a part time character it is exciting to have him stick it out for the whole story. Now it is easy to see that this self-sufficiency runs in the family. One more surprise, on this island the Alden's discover that they are not alone.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Amy

    It was a struggle for me to get through but my 6 yo liked it so I'm rating it based on his enjoyment. It was a struggle for me to get through but my 6 yo liked it so I'm rating it based on his enjoyment.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Maddie Kampf

    Mrs. Kampf's Reading Small Group: We loved that it was a mystery, but not too serious of a mystery, it was a lot of fun. It gave lots of clues throughout that allowed the reader to make predictions about what was going to happen. The clues were found in very unusual places. There is a lot of action, such as little Benny falling into a whole! It was definitely a five star mystery because it had a sweet and happy ending. We also enjoyed the climax as it was very exciting. We really loved the setti Mrs. Kampf's Reading Small Group: We loved that it was a mystery, but not too serious of a mystery, it was a lot of fun. It gave lots of clues throughout that allowed the reader to make predictions about what was going to happen. The clues were found in very unusual places. There is a lot of action, such as little Benny falling into a whole! It was definitely a five star mystery because it had a sweet and happy ending. We also enjoyed the climax as it was very exciting. We really loved the setting of this book. After all, who doesn't love a tropical island.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Nevada Libert

    the boys loved it. so did i,

  6. 5 out of 5

    Rivkah

    This mystery was amazing. I love how she draws on her experiences for her books.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Ditya Rathor

    I think this book has a lot of adventures. Great book!!!!!!!!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Leah

    This takes place during the school year. The family takes a trip to the South Pacific, near Tahiti. They spend a week on a secluded island with a cousin and a friend of their grandfather's. The mystery involves a shipwreck and a talking bird. This takes place during the school year. The family takes a trip to the South Pacific, near Tahiti. They spend a week on a secluded island with a cousin and a friend of their grandfather's. The mystery involves a shipwreck and a talking bird.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Dharia Scarab

    My love of reading started when i was young, and it gives me immense pleasure to provide books to Spread the Word Nevada, an organization that passes them on to children in the community. They are a terrific organization supporting an important cause. If your local I encourage you to check them out. For those living further a field, look in your own community, their may already be a similar program in place. And if not, you can always help start one. http://spreadthewordnevada.org/ Myself, I go ou My love of reading started when i was young, and it gives me immense pleasure to provide books to Spread the Word Nevada, an organization that passes them on to children in the community. They are a terrific organization supporting an important cause. If your local I encourage you to check them out. For those living further a field, look in your own community, their may already be a similar program in place. And if not, you can always help start one. http://spreadthewordnevada.org/ Myself, I go out on the weekends and shop thrift store and bulk book lots to rescue books and donate them. Sometimes I'll find a book I remember reading when I was young and will read it again before passing it on. I don't rate these books using my normal scale, instead I give most of them three stars. This isn't a Criticism of the book, simply my way of rating them as good for children.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Carter

    The alden family go on an adventure that grandfather's friend has been to that they think is now deserted. or so they think. The island seems to be covering a mystery that they need to uncover. And so to speak benny finds something awesome. At first peter is like a ghost for the alden family. And then they find out that he might be a bird. And then they find out that he's a boy that was deserted on this island to and was occupied by a man and might have lost his family on the boat wreck. And the The alden family go on an adventure that grandfather's friend has been to that they think is now deserted. or so they think. The island seems to be covering a mystery that they need to uncover. And so to speak benny finds something awesome. At first peter is like a ghost for the alden family. And then they find out that he might be a bird. And then they find out that he's a boy that was deserted on this island to and was occupied by a man and might have lost his family on the boat wreck. And they found out that peter has the last name as benny's teacher but there not relatives. My thoughts on this book is I really liked it it was good from the start. and in my opinion it was better than the others. and i really suggest it to people. The thoughts I had when I first started reading it was oh it's just another box car book. I liked it when I found out it was so exciting.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Laura Cushing

    For those just tuning in, I am reading this classic children's series free on Kindle Unlimited. In this installment, the children's fabulously wealthy grandfather takes them and Benny's friend Mike to vacation on an uncharted island with a sailor named Lars who had been shipwrecked there three years ago. Because this is the 1950s and it is a series for children, no one gets eaten by sharks and Lars is a good role model for the children. The book like all books in the series emphasizes the value For those just tuning in, I am reading this classic children's series free on Kindle Unlimited. In this installment, the children's fabulously wealthy grandfather takes them and Benny's friend Mike to vacation on an uncharted island with a sailor named Lars who had been shipwrecked there three years ago. Because this is the 1950s and it is a series for children, no one gets eaten by sharks and Lars is a good role model for the children. The book like all books in the series emphasizes the value of hard work and independence. A little mystery and adventure and 50s family fun, though today's kids would likely still enjoy it. I'm liking the series enough to keep reading, though I wish I'd have read them as a kid to get the full experience.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Sheri S.

    I really like the wholesomeness of this book series and the kindness, respect and politeness the characters demonstrate towards one another. This particular book is about another one of the adventures the family goes on to what they believe to be a deserted island. They bring some provisions but plan on using what they can find (i.e. stones for plates, etc.) during their explorations. A few mysterious events happen which lead the family to believe they may not be alone on the island. Benny disco I really like the wholesomeness of this book series and the kindness, respect and politeness the characters demonstrate towards one another. This particular book is about another one of the adventures the family goes on to what they believe to be a deserted island. They bring some provisions but plan on using what they can find (i.e. stones for plates, etc.) during their explorations. A few mysterious events happen which lead the family to believe they may not be alone on the island. Benny discovers they are, in fact, not alone and the family works together to provide assistance to an individual in need.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Gabby Proxmire

    Blue Bay Mystery Gertrude Chandler Warner Throughout this book Henry, Violet, Jessie, and little Benny go to a island. The island has no population on it and it is a relaxing vacation. So they thought.... Until they find out that there is more than just them on the island. This book is exciting when, Benny finds out that there is a little boy on the island and he is standing right in front of Benny. It is happy when Henry, Violet, Jessie, and Benny find the little boy's parents, back on the main l Blue Bay Mystery Gertrude Chandler Warner Throughout this book Henry, Violet, Jessie, and little Benny go to a island. The island has no population on it and it is a relaxing vacation. So they thought.... Until they find out that there is more than just them on the island. This book is exciting when, Benny finds out that there is a little boy on the island and he is standing right in front of Benny. It is happy when Henry, Violet, Jessie, and Benny find the little boy's parents, back on the main land. This book is recommended to middle schoolers because the characters in theese books are middle school age kids.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Erin Lee

    Good introduction for children to the ecosystem of the South Seas. This seemed to have a darker tone than a lot of the Boxcar Children books, but finished on a high note. (And for once, Benny had something more to say than that he was hungry.)

  15. 5 out of 5

    Bailey Marissa

    The Aldens and Mike Wood get to have an island vacation. It's not really a mystery, more of a bonding experience mixed with a coincidence. (It's still fun though.) The Aldens and Mike Wood get to have an island vacation. It's not really a mystery, more of a bonding experience mixed with a coincidence. (It's still fun though.)

  16. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    This one really inspired some creativity in my daughter who has been talking about islands and being stranded and survival etc.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Diane

    I thought it was so-so but I can see where young children would enjoy it. Desert islands are always fun and adventuresome. But after 6 months would you really forget so much?

  18. 4 out of 5

    Octavia Cade

    The kids are off camping on a tiny deserted South Sea island, on which they find a mystery because of course they do, they're like bloodhounds that way. I'm on the sixth of these books now and I think I'm slowly becoming inured to the utter ridiculousness of the plots. I mean, I get it's adventure wish-fulfilment for kids, and they're so enormously optimistic because they are for early readers, who no doubt don't want to be put off literacy for life by the infantile equivalent of Tess of the D'U The kids are off camping on a tiny deserted South Sea island, on which they find a mystery because of course they do, they're like bloodhounds that way. I'm on the sixth of these books now and I think I'm slowly becoming inured to the utter ridiculousness of the plots. I mean, I get it's adventure wish-fulfilment for kids, and they're so enormously optimistic because they are for early readers, who no doubt don't want to be put off literacy for life by the infantile equivalent of Tess of the D'Urbervilles (which I just finished reading yesterday, so thank you for that endless dose of misery Mr. Hardy, appreciate it I do not). But still. Even with the ridiculousness there are some things that cannot be overlooked - like the fact that, on this tiny island, the kids discover a 100 foot long giant stone statue, like the ones of Easter Island, when the man who was shipwrecked on that island for literally years never noticed it. I swear I felt my brain stutter at that one. But, credit where it's due, these books are thoroughly good-natured, everyone's always kind to each other and tries their best to be happy and self-sufficient and you know, no-one's playing in a uranium mine this time around so as ridiculous as the plot is, it's still a cut above some of the previous volumes.

  19. 4 out of 5

    JP

    Vacation this summer? Let's get purposely stranded on a tropical island! There's actually a lot more of the feel of the first book to this one, since they're on the island for a few weeks without any way of getting more supplies other than what they can build and find themselves. They do have two adults along though: Grandfather and newcomer Lars Larson[^madeup]--who previously got shipwrecked here ... and apparently wants to go back for vacation now? Sure. And Mike again, who's fun enough. Do a Vacation this summer? Let's get purposely stranded on a tropical island! There's actually a lot more of the feel of the first book to this one, since they're on the island for a few weeks without any way of getting more supplies other than what they can build and find themselves. They do have two adults along though: Grandfather and newcomer Lars Larson[^madeup]--who previously got shipwrecked here ... and apparently wants to go back for vacation now? Sure. And Mike again, who's fun enough. Do any of the other children have friends to spoil with vacations from a rich grandfather? In any case, it's a fun enough story in an exotic locale, perfect for escapism and learning how to live off the land in a relatively safe manner. There's a mystery, but not much of a mystery and everything ends up happy at the end. Pretty much a Boxcar Children story in a nutshell. [^madeup]: Totally sounds made up. Except apparently there's a conservative radio talk show host by that name.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Misbah

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. The Alden family go with a family friend to a deserted island. Lars, the family friend, was stranded on that island a few years ago and had a great time. They all learn how to survive on an island have a great time exploring. But soon they feel like someone else is on the island with them. One day while exploring Ben runs into a little boy named Peter. They learn from Peter he has been stuck on the island since a shipwreck 6 months ago. His parents were also on the ship and he doesn't know wheth The Alden family go with a family friend to a deserted island. Lars, the family friend, was stranded on that island a few years ago and had a great time. They all learn how to survive on an island have a great time exploring. But soon they feel like someone else is on the island with them. One day while exploring Ben runs into a little boy named Peter. They learn from Peter he has been stuck on the island since a shipwreck 6 months ago. His parents were also on the ship and he doesn't know whether they survived. When the ship comes back to take them home Mr. Alden contacts the mainland and they found out the Peter's parents are alive and they will meet them when the ship docks. Peter reunites with his parents and the Alden family head back home. A very happy sweet story.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Max Xu

    Blue Bay mystery (the boxcar children #6) Mr. Alden is planning a trip with his friend, Lars. Mr. Alden is trying to keep it a secret to his children, Benny, Henry, Jessie, and Violet. When he mentions that the children are going on a trip, they already know because they are good detectives. Mr. Alden says that they will first go on a airplane to Chicago, then they will go on a boat to a island called Blue Bay, next they will be there! When they first go there, they are scared, then they get used Blue Bay mystery (the boxcar children #6) Mr. Alden is planning a trip with his friend, Lars. Mr. Alden is trying to keep it a secret to his children, Benny, Henry, Jessie, and Violet. When he mentions that the children are going on a trip, they already know because they are good detectives. Mr. Alden says that they will first go on a airplane to Chicago, then they will go on a boat to a island called Blue Bay, next they will be there! When they first go there, they are scared, then they get used to it. They have a lot of fun there. Suddenly, they feel like someone is watching them. But after a few days, they figure out that it is a lost boy that was on the Explorer 2 that was watching them!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    Read for Reading Rush 2020, read a book in a genre you've always wanted to read more of (Mystery) I really love Mystery's for the factor of finding out "who done it". However, The Boxcar Children never have managed to do this satisfyingly, especially with this one. There's no real chance to solve "who did it," not enough time spent on the mystery, and an overall lackluster one. These first few books in the series were a part of my childhood, but mostly because they were easy and fun reads. I've g Read for Reading Rush 2020, read a book in a genre you've always wanted to read more of (Mystery) I really love Mystery's for the factor of finding out "who done it". However, The Boxcar Children never have managed to do this satisfyingly, especially with this one. There's no real chance to solve "who did it," not enough time spent on the mystery, and an overall lackluster one. These first few books in the series were a part of my childhood, but mostly because they were easy and fun reads. I've got a large amount of the series though, and they're perfect for readathons!

  23. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Nessler

    The 6th installment in the Boxcar Children series. This time Grandfather takes them on an island adventure. There appears to be a mystery, could there be someone on the island?The children continue to look for clues for the few weeks they are there until young Benny solves the mystery. These books are so neat always an adventure and never disappointed.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Nicola

    Miss 6 enjoyed 'ship school' and the children getting to sail away to a tropical island. Miss 6 and I like to explore different books and authors at the library, sometimes around particular topics or themes. We try to get different ones out every week or so; it's fun for both of us to have the variety and to look at a mix of new & favourite authors. Miss 6 enjoyed 'ship school' and the children getting to sail away to a tropical island. Miss 6 and I like to explore different books and authors at the library, sometimes around particular topics or themes. We try to get different ones out every week or so; it's fun for both of us to have the variety and to look at a mix of new & favourite authors.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Maria Rowena Getutua

    This is a children's book and the narration is as simple as it gets. I enjoyed the story without overthinking, just simply enjoyed with the Alden family and their vacation on an island. The story was pretty straightforward though. There also wasn't much distinction between the characters. This is a children's book and the narration is as simple as it gets. I enjoyed the story without overthinking, just simply enjoyed with the Alden family and their vacation on an island. The story was pretty straightforward though. There also wasn't much distinction between the characters.

  26. 5 out of 5

    gina

    This book resulted in the kiddo exclaiming "WHY is EVERY one of these books a MYSTERY?" and we had to talk about genre's. He likes variety so he's a bit befuddled by their insistence on a mystery every.single.time. LOL. Kids are so great. This book resulted in the kiddo exclaiming "WHY is EVERY one of these books a MYSTERY?" and we had to talk about genre's. He likes variety so he's a bit befuddled by their insistence on a mystery every.single.time. LOL. Kids are so great.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Stacie

    Grandpa takes them to an isolated island (where is this grandpa when I need him?!) and the kids find something mysterious going on... they are not alone!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Brooke Nadzam

    Another Boxcar book. I wish I liked these ones as much as I liked the first...but it's just not meant to be, I don't think. Another Boxcar book. I wish I liked these ones as much as I liked the first...but it's just not meant to be, I don't think.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Ashle Oaks

    This is a nice story about an island adventure. This one has some of the charm of the first book.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Maggie Carr

    Listed to the audiobook with the kids while painting our lemonade stand.

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