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drmaryannbell

Ma Bell's Books and stuff

Currently reading

Challenger Deep
Neal Shusterman
The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B
Teresa Toten
Bone Gap
Laura Ruby
Finding the Worm (Twerp Sequel)
Mark Goldblatt
Dash
Kirby Larson
Small Victories: Spotting Improbable Moments of Grace
Anne Lamott
Killer Instinct
Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption
Laura Hillenbrand
The Night Journal
Elizabeth Crook
Dead End in Norvelt
Jack Gantos

Ahoy! Swashbuckling Tale Saves Book!

Undertown - Melvin Jules Bukiet

I picked up this book at the San Marcos TX Public Library and knew from the blurb that I HAD to read it. Having explored my own hometown's storm sewers as a kid, I was immediately sucked into the idea of two youngsters navigating the NYC sewer system. I love sewers and I love New York City! What could be better? The plot flows along with a swift current (sorry, cannot resist) toward a super cool explosive climax. The vivid descriptions of the NYC system are icing on the cake. I could have a group of 7th graders salivating for this story in a matter of minutes. It is a heckuva yarn with a supporting cast of weird and amazing denizens of the underground world. Still there are some deficiencies, mostly having to do with the fact that this is Melvin Bukiet's first attempt to write a book for young readers. He keeps his tongue firmly in cheek with fun and humorous allusions and descriptions, which will be lost upon most youngsters. I did not check while reading it, but I kept telling myself this had to be a first such effort for the author because so often it sounds like an adult trying to write for kids but not quite hitting the mark. Yep, I was right. All the same it's such a fun story that I envision the right young reader racing through to see what happens next, less distracted than I was by phraseology. And wow! What a MOVIE this book would make! I also think it could be a fun read-aloud. I betcha I could tame a restless group of jazzed up middle-schoolers during last period on a Friday afternoon with the promise to read the next part of this story to them.