Tuesday, July 1, 2014
Book Review: Manhunt
By Kate Messner
Reviewed from NetGalley
Audience: Grades 4 to 6
Publication Date: June 24, 2014
The Junior Member of the Silver Jaguar Society are in quite a pickle this time as dozens of pieces of art go missing all around the world as the clock strikes midnight. Henry, Anna, and Jose are taken by their parents, and aunt, to Paris to work with the society against the Serpentine Princes. They met Brit Hem, who instantly rubs Henry the wrong way, and the two settle on an uneasy peace when the adults fail to return back to headquarters one night. Then it's up to the kids to not only find the adults, but find the Mona Lisa as well. Plenty of actual landmarks become hiding places and Henry and the gang must keep searching before it's too late.
While I prefer the first Silver Jaguar Society book, Capture the Flag, this one is fun too. The action is more pressing and dangerous this time around, where as in the first it seemed more comical. Henry is a more developed character in this book, however, as he struggles to give up some of his leadership and learn who to trust. The setting is impressive, and Messner gives an author's note with personal pictures from catacombs and rooftops that readers will enjoy.
There are plenty of art heist books out there, but the Silver Jaguar Society books are a worthwhile addition to that genre. Unlike the recently reviewed Loot, these kids are trying to save the artwork, not steal it. Although less intriguing than Chasing Vermeer and it's successors, Manhunt and others in the series are high interest books for all types of readers.