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The Last Treasure of Ancient England (The Chester Bentley Mysteries) (Volume 1) Paperback – October 14, 2016
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Top Customer Reviews
The story of the invasion of Britain was superbly told as it brings to life the different fighting skills and strategies of both Normans and Saxons in huge battles. Unfortunately, the horrendous wipe outs of whole villages had become common place but it was the individual stories of the soldiers that really sold me especially with one particular good man. It is through him that the story in the future is made.
When Chester Bentley arrives at a remote boarding school that is steeped in its own history going back 1000 years, he gets the funny feeling that something special is going to happen. An adventure that is brought to life with a special word. It is here that no one in the past has been able to solve an age old riddle but there is great danger in this school of secrets.
There are such great moments in this book, from the battles I loved to the schools super sleuths where at times boys were scared and girls were daring. I had such a heart in my mouth moment regarding an unusual way to get up trees, brilliant but definitely not to be tried at home. This book would make a great read in school. The children would be riveted to it. Loved it and this is only book one in the series. Highly recommended.
There is a real sense of wonder, mystery and discovery as you read this book. I felt like I was going on the adventure with Bentely, Montague, Iona, Zara and Q. The pace is much slower than a traditional mystery, yet there is a palpable sense of urgency building through out the book.
The book has three separate story lines that all take part in different times. I was really impressed with the one following the Norman invasion of 1066. I have read multiple books about this time period and never had a Norman character that was as compelling as Richard. Usually the Normans are all cast as bad guys with a serious case of blood lust, and there are those characters too, but Richard is not like them. It was nice to see a character that was three dimensional, and thoughtful.
The only problem I had with the book is what I call the “Harry Potter Effect,” where the book basically praises and reward children for breaking the rules. In fact, if they didn’t repeatedly break the rules the mystery would never have been solved. Add to that, the fact that some of the adults are bumbling and clueless and others are out to get the children, and you have a bad mix. This is just one of my pet peeves. I want to see books set a better example and for writers to find more creative ways to move the plot ahead.
A really good book that mixes a historical fiction of the Norman invasion with a mystery at a boarding school. The mystery had plenty of surprises (in fact I had not guessed which “particular item” it was that disappeared,) the characters were warm and likable, and the pace well thought out. I hope to read more of Bentley’s adventures in the future.
NOTE: I received this book free from the author.
I did find it hard to put down as it accompanied me around Thailand.