See, so not over! The 39 Clues adventure series lives on in Book 11, Vespers Rising (author team Riordan, Lerangis, Korman & Watson) where we are immediately launched into the past (Dude WAY back, try 1507) to the deep roots of the original Cahill family and their heartless mortal enemy, Lord Vesper himself.
We step right into the heartbreaking story where fragile family ties are torn to shreds in spite of major sacrifices by the devoted, determined father Gideon Cahill and selfless, loving mother Oliva. The four Cahill children, Luke, Thomas, Jane and Katherine flee their island home as their father is killed in a lab fire that keeps Lord Vesper from acquiring lethal power. But will Oliva survive? What secrets does she keep?
Next, we fast forward to 1526 to finally get more acquainted with the infamous Madeline Cahill, founder of the Madrigals. But as a child, was she the fearless and cunning leader of the most covert branch of the Cahill family? Hum, you decide, but just remember sometimes when we are at our most vulnerable, our inner strength takes over and we learn who we really are. Madeline lives by three rules: 1) keep her father’s ring safe 2) never let anyone abuse the power of the 39 Clues and 3) unite the Cahill family when the time is right. And of course, stay alive. Don’t look back. And wow, does she EVER evolve into a total bad ass ninja woman. Go girl!
Monaco 1942… we get to meet, Grace Cahill? Dan and Amy’s grandmother? But haven’t we’ve met her before? And re-lived her adventures in numerous flash backs? Trust me, not like this. You’re going to love experiencing Grace at age 12, with brother Fiske in diapers, how she flees to Casablanca to deliver a life or death message, only to uncover even darker secrets. Maybe you’ll agree with me that 12 year old Grace at times reminds you of our Amy…
Suddenly, we’re back to the present, in a major way, as in, Dan vegging in social studies class, bored out of his wits. Yes, he and Amy are living happily with Fiske, Nellie and even salmon loving Saladin, but after their perilous yet victorious adventures around the globe, they are forever changed. The clue hunt burns inside of them… how can they go back to being just regular kids again? Well, it appears that is not even an option, as the clue won’t let them go either! Amy will now have to step up and be the keeper of the Cahill family ring, but first, she must locate where Grace carefully hid it, and then hide it AGAIN, safe from the Vespers. Not an easy task, especially if YOU are now being hunted. But we know from the previous ten 39 Clues stories how Dan and Amy are by far the most clever and resourceful clue hunters… not only do they outsmart the Vespers, but make a decision about their futures which would make Madeline and Grace Cahill incredibly proud.
Vespers Rising is a collection of important back stories in which the reader experiences first hand the phoenix rising from the ashes of the horrible lab fire so long ago, even if it takes several centuries. And as we know, The 39 Clues is a multimedia story, so I also logged on to The 39 Clues website and continued my adventure with online card collecting, new missions, secret agent messages, games and more!
Next up… Book One of Cahills vs Vespers – The Medusa Plot by Gordon Korman and Card Pack One.
Unlock your top secret online mission!
See you on the clue hunt!
Previous 39 Clues book reviews by William Wu Books:
Book One: The Maze of Bones
Book Two: One False Note
Book Three: The Sword Thief
Book Four: Beyond the Grave
Book Five: The Black Circle
Book Six: In Too Deep
Book Seven: The Viper’s Nest
Book Eight: The Emperor’s Code
Book Nine: Storm Warning
Book Ten: Into the Gauntlet
The Black Book of Buried Secrets