Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Book 80 - The Danger Box by Blue Balliet - Three Oaks, Michigan, USA

How can a legally blind boy solve a mystery? Zoomy is legally blind - his world can be scarey sometimes as things come in and out of focus.  He lives with his grandparents who have taught him how to make lists to help bring some order and predictability into his world. 

One evening Zoomy's father returns driving a stolen car, bringing a mysterious box and danger into their quiet lives. This is the first time Zoomy has met his his absent father and he is not sure he likes the way Buckeye creates havoc for his family.

Zoomy's grandfather is an antiques dealer and he takes the box to his shop but not before Zoomy, a keeper of notebooks himself, asks if he can read the notebook they found inside the box.

The notebook holds many mysteries for Zoomy who spends time at his library trying to discover what the notebooks is all about. While at the library Zoomy meets a true friend in Lorrol, who is at Three Oaks for the summer vacation. Together they begin to work out that the notebook is very precious indeed and written by a famous man who not unlike Zoomy is full of self doubt and uses the notebook to bring order into his life.

Throughout the novel there are issues of "The Gas Gazette" written by Zoomy and Lorrol with clues as to the identity of the notebook writer. 

Review from Kidsreads by Norah Piehl   Review from the Chicago Sun Times by Deborah Abbott
Blue Balliet speaking about her novel