The Adventurers and the Cursed Castle by Jemma Hatt
Publisher: Elmside Publishing
Genre: 9-12 Middle Grade Thriller/Mystery
TOTAL RATING: 4.0 STARS
The Adventurers is a quaint children’s adventure (lol) story, filled with the mischief, mystery and suspense that I’d equate to a good Scooby Doo mystery.
The Adventurers is made of Lara, her cousin Rufus and dog, Barney. Sent to stay with a distant uncle in Cornwall, they find themselves in Kexley Hall, an ancient castle that’s seen better days.
What’s worse sis everybody acts like something is wrong with the castle – there’s whispers of a curse. The local castle keepers have a son called Tom and he completes the gang.
There’s a strong link as I’ve mentioned to Scooby Doo earlier and the main characters – Lara is smart and collected (Velma), Rufus is always making jokes and eating (Shaggy), there’s the confident leader in Tom (Fred) and the dog companion in Barney (Scooby). Additionally, the story had a quaint charm in that there’s never the sense of anything wicked than a sinister plot to extort money or rob something – in the case of the Curse Castle, it’s the long lost treasure of Lara and Rufus’ ancestor, Jack Kexley. That sense of mystery and intrigue suits the age bracket perfectly.
The story moves along with a good pace, with the plot hook making sense and the puzzle of the mystery well thought out.
For myself, I also listened to the Audiobook and this was only about 4 hours in length and was perfect Sunday afternoon listening.
All in all, a wonderful middle grade story which has three more sequels so if you like it then you’ll have a ton of additional stories to enjoy.