284 Pages (Hardcover)
August 8, 2011
*Thanks to Andy Hueller for sending me an ARC for review
Calvin Comet Cobble lives at Hidden Shores Orphanage. Location: the very center of the earth. Cal's life is full of the school bully and mean teachers, but when he meets Mr. E, who can skip a stone clear across Lake Arctic, everything about Cal's life changes. Told with wit and charm, Skipping Stones at the Center of the Earth is guaranteed to excite and inspire readers of all ages.
This middle grade read was fun, adventurous, imaginative and overall, very entertaining. The younger audience is sure to love it.
Skipping Stones at the Center of the Earth is the story of Calvin Comment Cobble, or Cal as his friend (singular) calls him. He has unruly red hair that always seems to get him into trouble. The only thing he knows about his parents is that his mother died shortly after giving birth to him. He doesn't know who his father is. That is how he finds himself at Hidden Shores Orphanage, literally at the center of the earth.
This is a story of childhood and all the troubles that come along with it. Crazy teachers, mean kids, limited choices and rules, rules, rules. With the added aspect of the setting, Island Robert, this story is even more kooky, strange and entertaining than most. Robert is at the center of the earth (further explained in the story), half of the island is in light all of the time, that is the half that houses the orphanage. The other half is in complete and utter darkness, which houses a prison for only the most dangerous criminals in the world. Once you step into the shadow, you don't come out.
Cal's adventures are fun, hilarious, frustrating, suspenseful and strange all at the same time. But there is one thing I can promise - his story is very entertaining.
I really liked the characters in this story. Cal was very likable and understandable, as was his best friend Berneatha. The teachers were very strange, and all very crazy. The rest; Mr. E, Principal Warden, and the school children were all very different, and really added to the story. You'll see what I mean if you read the story, it is kind of hard to explain.
One other thing, the story switches from past to present which was something that I really liked. It let the reader see what happen in the past and see the story unfold before the main character does. Usually I find that type of thing kind of annoying, but I like it this time because it set up how Cal and his world came to be.
Obviously I was not the target audience for this novel, but I did enjoy it. I would recommend this especially for older elementary and middle grade boys. This is definitely a good one to buy for your sons, little brothers, nephews or grandsons. But that's not saying girls of the same age won't like it too.
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Leave a Comment: Are you a good stone skipper?