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The Volcano of Doom

by Sigmund Brouwer
Series: The Accidental Detectives #1
138 pages, Mystery
Reviewed by Ariel_of_Narnia

Preteens in Hawaii put their concerns for others and thinking skills to the test for a good mystery.

Plot

Ricky Kidd, his family, and two of his friends are in Hawaii to celebrate the wedding of Mr. Kidd's college buddy. Hawaii's got everything: volcano-ash beaches, shark-fishing, a Japanese statue worth millions, and dangerous people ready to do anything to get their hands on said statue. Hawaiian vacations couldn't possibly be better.

Morality

Ricky and his family are very loving folks. He and his friends care deeply for each other. The engaged couple love each other very much. At one point, Ricky treats Mike wrongly at one point, but his conscience weighs heavy immediately after; the issue is later resolved.

The kids also waver over whether or not they should tell Mr. and Mrs. Kidd of their suspicions. They decide against it. And then, of course, there are the baddies who don't have such care.

Mike is certain that a man purposely bumped him into shark-inhabited water. Lisa confronts Ricky and Mike concerning their "tutoring" of Ricky's brother Joel. Mike nabs an item he's sure was meant to be picked up by an unscrupulous somebody.

Spiritual Content

These characters are Christians. Ricky, Mike, and Lisa have a brief but real discussion about God's handiwork. Ricky breathes a couple quick but heartfelt prayers.

Violence

Mention of chopped up, bloody chicken guts used to attract sharks, along with information on sharks sensing blood. Mike makes a sarcastic joke about sticking a fishing hook in his arm and jumping overboard. Ricky and Mike have fears concerning sharks, partly fueled by the movie "Jaws".

An eel bites Ricky in the stomach. A man raises his hand to hit another character and gets a faceful of sand in return. Ricky and Mike tackle him and are thrown (painfully) off.

A man is reported to have entered a house and taken something in broad daylight and with people around. Ricky wakes up at one point to find his mouth muffled and someone searching his bed. He fears for the safety of his mom and baby sister during that time. Ricky and his friends are attacked and bound. They are threatened with lava-barbeque and shark-dinner on separate occasions. Mention of guns being pointed.

Drug and Alcohol Content

None.

Sexual Content

None.

Crude or Profane Language or Content

April Fools' jokes add to the fun, but should probably not be repeated. Ricky and Mike fulfill an embarrassing (but not inappropriate) bet placed by Lisa. Ricky accidentally throws up on Mike. The kids' sleuthing actions should not be repeated.

Conclusion

All in all, a well-formed mystery with good characters of equally good morals. Included are a lesson about yielding to temptation and a few laughs to spice the cake.

Fun Score: 5
Values Score: 5
Written for Age: 11-12

Review Rating:

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