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Posted March 2, 2013
Nicholas is not looking forward to spending the summer with his twin sisters, Haley and Hetty at his Uncle Nick's house at Forsaken Lake. Nick's Dad is a doctor and he is going to Africa to help out people who need it in the Doctors Without Borders program. Things start to get interesting when Nick finds a secret compartment in his Uncle's house. The compartment is filled with stuff from Nick's dad. One of the things in the compartment is a movie made by Nick's father. The movie is about the legendary Seaweed Strangler at Forsaken lake, but it was never finished. Nick and his new friend, Charlie (a kind of tomboyish girl) set out to discovery the mystery behind the movie, the Seaweed Strangler and some old family secrets that they never knew about!
This book had it all - mystery, adventure, excitement, friendship, a great setting, a Seaweed Strangler, great characters, alien robots... OK it didn't have alien robots, but it did have all the other stuff. The story was written well. It kept me turning the pages. I think I should tell you that even though it has the Seaweed Strangler movie in the book, it is not a horror book, there is no violence (except during a kid-made movie, but that's not over-the-top violence) and no cursing at all. Mr. Beil wrote a great mystery that kids of all ages can read! The sketchy illustrations throughout the book really went nicely with the story. I highly recommend this book!
**Note - I bought a copy of this book at a festival.
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This is a great MG novel that I highly recommend to parents and teachers alike. Filled with adventure, mystery, and intrigue, Beil takes his young readers on a ride that they won’t soon forget.
Originally, I thought that this novel was going to be a type of horror/suspense novel, with a seaweed monster and the like, but it actually turned out to be more focused on family values and coming of age, which I enjoyed. While I was a little disappointed that there wasn’t more dealing with a real live seaweed monster, I liked the digging the kids do to uncover the truth about their dad and why he never visits Forsaken Lake anymore.
Overall, this is a very well written story with some great morals that I think are great for the MG and younger YA readers. I personally tend to like books for a little bit older crowd, but still think this is a great read!