Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Treasure Hunters

61aaYKVEHbL._SL300_.jpg (300×300)Title: Treasure Hunters (Book 1)

Authors: James Patterson and Chris Grabenstein

Narrator: Bryan Kennedy

Publisher: Hachette Audio, 2013

Format: 5 compact discs, approximately 6 hours

Genre: children (ages 9-12), adventure

Obtained: library

Summary: Bick, Beck, Tommy, and Storm are the children of world-famous treasure hunters.  When their parents disappear, what else can they do but continue with the family's treasure hunting business and, of course, try to locate their parents along the way?

Thoughts: While looking for some audio books for our family to listen to on a long car ride, my 15 year old son recommended this one.  It was one of his favorite books from 5th or 6th grade.  He does not like to read, so this told me it must be good.  At the beginning of the first cd, the narrator lets the listener know that there is a pdf on one of the cd's which includes the illustrations from the book.  I am guessing that most readers listening to an audio book would not bother with a pdf.  Individuals I know that listen to audio books do so when doing tasks, riding in a vehicle, while lying in bed at night with the lights out, or because they have a visual disability.  It's great the pictures are there, but my family was unable to look at them in the car.  My son said at the end that he had forgotten that the pictures were really one of the best parts of the book!  Nevertheless, we all enjoyed the book without the illustrations.

The narrator told the story with energy, enthusiasm, and excitement.  He really got into the story.  He was a great narrator for children's books.  I believe his energy would hold kid's interest.  He also had distinct voices for each character, making the story easy to follow.

The story itself was a crazy, fast paced adventure.  Most of the story took place on (and in) the ocean, but the children did go to different ports, meeting many interesting characters.  Not only were the main characters unique and quirky, but so were the minor characters.  The story is told in first person by one of the children, Bick, and his twin sister, Beck, told her version through the illustrations.  The children's adventures involved pirates, sharks, kidnapping, martial arts, surfer dudes, secret agents, mysteries, scuba diving, treasures, guns, helicopters, food, and much more.  Some themes in the book are working together, everyone has strengths and weaknesses, valuing others for who they are, don't give up, have hope, look outside the box.  The plot is not deep and is far from realistic.  This is a humorous, entertaining book.

Although this is a children's book, it did entertain our whole family for our car ride. We'll be listening to the second book in the series on our next car trip.  Also, readers may want to check out the print version to experience the illustrations.


Company: French Creek Tea Company
P.O. Box 5021, Custer, SD 57730
Phone: (605) 6735383

Tea: Toodles

Obtained: from owners

Toodles is a "blend of black teas flavored with coconut, mango, vanilla, and lemon".  It came in a high quality, resealable black bag.  The bag was labeled with the name of the company, the name and a description of the tea, and brewing instructions.  The bag was easy to open.  The long, black tea leaves had a few chunks of light brown fruit mixed in.  The strong scent of the leaves was of tropical fruit.

I put two teaspoons of leaves into my teapot and poured 12 ounces of water that had been boiled over the leaves.  I let this brew for four minutes.  The dark, orange brown liquid had a black tea scent combined with sweet, tropical fruit.  The taste of the tea was of black tea with a subtle tropical fruit and sweet vanilla background.  The coconut did not stand out as it does when added to many tea combinations.  This is a smooth, sweet tea.  I was expecting this tea to be light, but it was not.  It had some body to it which was different from many tropical teas I have tried.  This tea would be great for anyone that likes black tea and fruit blends.

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