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on March 8, 2009
I love every book in the "39 Clues" series, but this is THE BEST! It's a cool story and funny too. I couldn't put it down and read it in one day. Now my friends are taking turns reading it. I am 12 and love spy books - I am going to look for more books by Peter Lerangis.
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on March 13, 2009
I don't have time to read the actual text like my 8 year old. However, I am able to buy the audiobook and read along with him since they come unabridged. It is very interesting how the authors tell the story using modern references while still teaching the reader about History. Having the same narrator throughout the series is the best part.

The first two audio books offered short glimpses into Grace Cahill's early life before the hunt; each audio book has information not available in the regular book.

Either product comes with the same trading cards. I didn't bother to purchase the card packs but the ones inside offer some more puzzles for enhanced story details. Very good series.
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VINE VOICEon March 8, 2009
I love being able to follow along with a series as the books come out. The anticipation of waiting for the next book always makes me somehow euphoric in a weird, booky way. I love it. So when the next entry in THE 39 CLUES came out, I had to pick it up. This time around, the book was written by Peter Lerangis, an author I must admit I had not heard of before picking up THE SWORD THIEF, the third book in this highly marketable series by Scholastic.

The story picks right up from where ONE FALSE NOTE (book 2) ended off, so it would definitely be hard to just jump right in. You've got to really start back at book 1 (THE MAZE OF BONES) and work your way through. Not that reading these is work -- they fly through pretty quickly. In fact, THE SWORD THIEF is the shortest of the three so far, coming in at a mere 156 pages.

This time, Dan and Amy are off to Japan, but they've been separated by their scheming relatives from their au pair, Nellie Gomez. And they'll have to work along with Alistair Oh in order to solve the next clue in the whole big puzzle. There is definitely plenty of adventure and Lerangis handles the action scenes fairly well. I felt that this book moved along a little more swiftly than ONE FALSE NOTE, which had a few moments of "slowness." We find out more clues to the overall Cahill secret, and some interesting details about Amy and Dan's past.

One of the only things that somewhat confused me at times was the incessant head-hopping that Lerangis did. One minute we're in Dan's head. Then a few pages later we're in Amy's, then in Ian Kabra, then Alistair Oh, then back to Ian, and on to Natalie. It was a little bit confusing at times, but I can see how Lerangis wanted to build on a couple of the different characters and develop them a bit -- which makes for probably what will end up being a few different plot twists later on in the series.

Overall, this is another decent entry in a pretty fun, sometimes forgettable, series that has some really great potential. I can't wait to see what Jude Watson will do with book #4...
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on June 5, 2012
Another book, another clue. That's the pattern of the 2nd and 3rd books and I suspect many of the rest as well. While one might get the impression that such a pattern would lead to repetitive and predictable story telling such is not the case. The different authors are mixing things up nicely. The characters remain in character of course but viewpoints are subtly changing from book to book. In this book Dan and Amy share the spotlight with their mysterious uncle Alistair Oh who is is portrayed much more sympathetically than previously with some interesting background for motivation. Also front and center are the Kabra siblings with hints that they are not irredeemably evil. The Holts make a brief appearance for comic relief, Irina even briefer, but Jonah Wizard doesn't show up in this book.

The travelogue aspect is skillfully woven in as well. The reader gets some historical references which can be pursued at leisure but it never descends to gratuitous lectures; everything moves the plot forward. There is also more Cahill back story doled out, both that of the family as a whole and Alistair, Amy and Dan in particular. We also are told what the object of this global scavenger hunt is but I suspect that might be misdirection.

The Kindle version is the perfect reading experience. However, I couldn't care less about the online/interactive features.

Highly recommended. While it is hardly necessary to read them all one after another it probably is a good idea not to let too much time go by between books. On to book four.
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If you just discovered this book because it's a best seller, you owe it to yourself to go back and read the first two books in the 39 Clues series, The Maze of Bones and One False Note, before starting this one so you'll know the background to this story and the contest to be the first to find all 39 clues.

Peter Lerangis takes the story in some new directions by changing the nature of cooperation among the various Cahills as they search for more clues. I found that adjusting the behaviors and attitudes added depth to the story so that it seemed more real.

As the book opens, Amy, Dan, their au pair Nellie, and their cat, Saladin, are racing to catch a plane to Japan. Amy and Dan are fighting over whether the swords that Dan packed in the luggage will survive security. When the youngsters are pulled out of line at the last minute, Amy and Dan fear the worst. But something even worse is about to happen!

And all this occurs by page 11.

More complications quickly ensue and Amy and Dan continue their trip while worrying that Nellie and Saladin may be in danger. Along the way, they get some unexpected help from another Cahill relative whom they have grown to distrust based on his habit of disappearing just as their lives are about to be snuffed out. While with this relative, they learn a lot about another part of the family line that connects into Japan.

The search for the next clue takes them into two very dangerous places where any number of things can (and will) go wrong.

The second great strength of this story is that it has lots of action, and reversals occur very quickly and completely . . . at the most opportune moments.

I find myself looking forward to each new book with increased interest. There's a pattern here, but it's a pleasant one. Dan acts like a jerk, but his remarkable memory helps turn up clues and their meanings when setbacks occur. Amy keeps a level head and helps avoid silly mistakes. The other relatives jump in and out of the story to display their character flaws.

I keep thinking of the Amazing Race as I read one of these books, but it's clear that the search for the 39 clues is ever so much more exciting than that often-predictable story of waiting in airports and sitting on long plane flights before making a brief dash for the next clue on the Amazing Race.

This story also leaves more mysteries up in the air than it resolves. As a result, I found myself more intrigued at the end than in the beginning. That's a well-planned plot!

Enjoy the dash for the third clue!!
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on September 17, 2014
{My Thoughts} – Amy, Dan and Nellie are on the go again. This time they are on their way to Japan following yet the latest clue they have discovered in the fast pace hunt of the 39 Clues. They have a bit of a problem at the airport where Nellie ends up leaving them behind because of a random check that had pulled them out of their line and prevented them from boarding the plane without them, A lot of chaos happens once the plane finally leaves without them on it. Then end up rushing out of the airport and being rescued by none other then Uncle Alistair.

Uncle Alistair then takes Nellie’s place for a remainder of the book. I have to admit a lot of what he says in this book is sort of cryptic and I can’t wait to see what it all actual means, in other words I am hoping it will be explained later on in the series. The kids have no choice but to trust him and their adventure officially begins.

At this point it gets super fast pace and really hard to put down. I read it in one sitting. It was that hard to walk away from. I really do enjoy these nice fast reads. I do believe that we learned some rather tasteful information in this book about Amy, Dan and Uncle Alistair. There is always so much packed into such a small amount of pages, that occasionally it leaves you with the expression, omgosh! This book ends with them in Korea! I wish I could do half the traveling these kids are doing!

I believe still that anyone that is a fan of National Treasure the Disney movies will enjoy this series. It is similar but much more vivid I suppose I would say. The imagery that is built with words is incredible! Also on a side note: I truly enjoyed “The Magic School Bus” reference I had run across! It made my day, I always enjoy things that make me think about my childhood! It’s amazing that children today know and love that cartoon as much as I did when I was a child! Way off base here!

To sum it up, this is a wonderful book and I can’t wait until I finish the next one, which by the way is on my bookshelf calling my name!
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on April 10, 2009
Amy and Dan have been waylaid at the airport en route to Japan. Instead of boarding the plane, they're taken to a room for a random search.

Meanwhile, Natalie and Ian Kabra board the plane in their place. Nellie, their au pair, has already boarded. Unsure of the next step, Amy and Dan leave the airport and find a car waiting for them. Uncle Alistair wants to work with them again, but can they trust him?

Together they head to Japan using Uncle Alistair's private jet. When they arrive in Japan, they meet up with Nellie and the Kabras. In order to find the clues, Amy and Dan know they have to compromise and make alliances, but they do not know who to trust.

Are their lives once again in danger while searching for the next clue?

THE SWORD THIEF is the third book in THE 39 CLUES series (each written by a different author - so far). I'm addicted to this series, and while a different person pens each book, they each contain so much action that it's almost impossible to differentiate between the writers.

This series has a fabulous online component, too, that you must check out if you haven't yet.

Reviewed by: Jennifer Rummel
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on December 1, 2015
This is the Third book of the 39 clues. In this book, Amy and Dan are forced to team up with Alistair Oh, their uncle, and fly with him on his private plane to Tokyo, Japan. Together, they learn about Toyotomi Hideyoshi, the greatest warrior in the history of Japan, and the son of the first Tomas. The Holts then kidnap Amy, Dan, and Alistair and threaten them into helping them find the next clue. I can't believe Amy almost kissed Ian, Gross! I don't get why my friend wants them to end up together. And What will happen to Alistair, NO ONE KNOWS (winkie faces)
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on August 29, 2014
I really enjoyed this book. The clues were interesting and I'm glad Korea was included instead of just Europe. I cant stand that evil Natalie and whatever his name is. I look forward to reading about Allistar's revenge.
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on January 28, 2016
Okay, I'm 29 years old, and reading this decidedly tween books which, by all rights, should not interest me. They're farmed out to different authors, allowing the writing to go faster while keeping up an okay quality. It makes each book feel a bit different as we switch author style, with a slight change in character personalities as each writer interprets them differently.

But I keep going! It's like National Treasure for kids. But still with plenty of treachery and danger (or simulated danger; after all, the publishers aren't going to kill people off here like they would in an adult series). And, most interesting, the "villainous" other parties to the hunt are being humanized with each book. In this one, it's the Kabra siblings and Alastair Oh we get to know, making them less obstacles and more actual relatives who have a connection, be it small, to Amy and Dan's lives.

This book has a bit of romance in it, which many readers might be fine with, but I was just going "you're relatives. You're relatives. I know it must go back dozens of generations, making you about as closely related as anyone else on the planet, but you know you're related, STOP THAT!"

Also, I had this moment in the book, as they're mentioning all the Cahills among the different nations and ethnicities, that there's got to be a large portion of the population whom are actually Cahills. Unless they interbreed?

Which would explain the romance....

I'm just...going to forget all this.

But I shouldn't think it all over too much. This is just quick adventure book, and if it gets your kid reading, all the better!
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