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|Knightley & son|
Author: Gavin, Rohan
A father and son detective team investigates the mystery surrounding a book that makes its readers commit terrible crimes, and a sinister organization known as the Combination.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG+
Reading Level: 6.20
Points: 10.0 Quiz: 167831
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 3-5
Reading Level: 5.60
Points: 16.0 Quiz: 63837
School Library Journal (+) (00/04/14)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (00/05/14)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 04/01/2014 Gr 7 Up—Darkus Knightley's father has been in a coma for four years. During that time, Darkus went through his detective dad's files and began trying to solve unfinished cases. His father suddenly wakes up and strangely enough, his recovery coincides with an uptick in crime. The crimes seem to be related to people reading a book called The Code. The elder Knightley is worried about including his son in his investigations; he is convinced that all of the little schemes and crimes are linked into a nefarious network he calls The Combination. Darkus becomes essential, however, when his father's data drive is stolen, thereby leaving Darkus as the only person who remembers and knows all of the case file information. Joining father and son is Tilly, Darkus's gadget-savvy stepsister. Can they figure out the connection between all of the seemingly random crimes? Is there a Combination? Gavin has created a fun "Sherlock Holmes"—style adventure, with modern twists and a bit of humor. The combination is skillfully done. This is a quick and fun read; a great choice for choice looking for a new mystery to dive into.—Saleena L. Davidson, South Brunswick Public Library, Monmouth Junction, NJ - Copyright 2014 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Bulletin for the Center... - 05/01/2014 Since his gumshoe father fell into a coma four years ago, kid-genius Darkus Knightley has been memorizing his dad’s files, learning as much about the skill of detection as possible, and it looks like those skills are about to be put to the test. A series of unexplained robberies plagues London, and a best-selling book is suddenly sending people into madness. Additionally, Darkus’ dad has just woken up, and he wants to take these cases on his own, convinced that they are linked to the Combination, a worldwide network of villains bent on world destruction. Unfortunately, an episode of narcolepsy puts Dad out of commission again, and it’s up to Darkus to finish the case. Darkus has the calculating mind, the cool attention to detail, and the abundance of tweed of a young Sherlock Holmes, and the characterizations, plot devices, and story arc combine in an amalgam of classic detective tropes boiled down for the middle-grade audience. The father-son relationship adds a bit of pathos to all the logic, with Darkus wondering if his father sees him as anything other than a useful detecting tool. The mystery is genuinely compelling, with the appropriate MacGuffins and red herrings, and the bad guys get their comeuppance (two of them quite gruesomely). A few hints at the conclusion, however, point toward a sequel, and readers can hope that Darkus’ snarky stepsister and gadget-loving teacher will play bigger parts in upcoming installments. KQG - Copyright 2014 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.
Booklist - 05/01/2014 Thirteen-year-old Darkus’ father, investigator Alan Knightley, has been in a comalike state for four years. Meanwhile, Darkus has been studying the hard drive containing his dad’s notes on a mysterious criminal organization called the Combination. Then Alan awakens and learns that these villains are responsible for a new series of crimes committed by innocent people under their control. When the hard drive is stolen, Alan must rely on Darkus’ memory to fill in past events. Together, father and son try to fit the puzzle pieces together in time to identify and thwart their ruthless enemies. Set in England, Gavin’s first novel has a darker atmosphere, a more sophisticated tone, and more adult characters than most mysteries for a young audience. The criminals’ method never feels quite believable, but Gavin deftly paces the story, maintaining the narrative tension, and he introduces some strong characters, such as loyal, methodical Darkus and his angry, enigmatic stepsister, Tilly. Fans of this debut will be glad that the ending leaves the door open for sequels. - Copyright 2014 Booklist.