The Secret Seekers Society and the Beast Of Bladenborro.
Young siblings, Hunter Glen and Elly Anne, lost their parents in a plane crash merely two weeks ago. Unknowing how to deal with the sudden and painful loss, the children find themselves living with their enigmatic Godfather, Dr. Calenstine. Taken from their home, and all their friends, they find themselves living inside the even more mysterious Belmonte Manor, a secretive and enormous estate that houses a creepy ancient castle.
Despite the kindness of the Manor’s caretakers, the siblings find themselves imprisoned in their room, where the many secrets and dark past of their new home slowly unfold before their very eyes. Follow the young children as they unravel the truth behind their parents past, the mysterious and creepy Belmonte estate, and their “roles” in the terrifying events that the kids often find themselves in. Filled with secret societies, ancient monsters, mysterious objects, and more adventure the children could have ever hoped for, J.L. Hickey promises a journey great for young adults, yet wonderfully exciting and riveting for all ages. -Goodreads
For anyone that loves an adventure, Author J.L. Hickey provides a novel with rich imagery and tons of heart.
“These aren’t real, right?” Hunter added, a bit baffled by the conversation. “I don’t know, you tell me,” Margot added slyly. “Are you a believer?” she asked. “In what?” Hunter replied. “Of the unknown, of course,” Ms. Ellingbee joined in. “Of fairy tales, legendary creatures, magical items, and of course all those wondrous little things in between.” She smiled. “Oh…..” Hunter paused for a moment, thinking of the question.”
We are introduced to siblings Hunter and Elly Jakobs who have experienced one of the most heartbreaking events that no child should have to endure. Weeks after their parents demise they are thrust into a world of secrecy, myths and inevitable danger.
Hunter and Elly end up moving into Belmonte Estate where they are to be raised by their Godfather Professor Calenstine, a man they have never met or had knowledge of. For both of them these sudden changes are hard to deal with. Not only have they lost the two most important people in their lives, but they are thrust into a mysterious castle in which they are kept in their rooms.
As many of us know kids will be kids and curiosity get’s the best of them.
“Hunter quickly grew bored, and his curiosity of what secrets lurked within the mansion only grew greater as the days went on. Elly, however, was quite happy spending the majority of her day reading all the wonderful books they had given her.”
Hunter is tenacious boy. He wants to know what secrets lurk behind the door of his bedroom, while Elly is more the voice of reason. The two of them end up sneaking out of their room and encounter the Beast of Bladenboro. This event leads to some unfortunate circumstances that leads to Elly being injured and Hunter to reflect on the world that seems to be spinning out of control around him.
“What if she never wakes up? he thought. Again, the dreary word popped up in his mind–alone. He thought of how fickle the word was. It was used every day for so many reasons, but now such a simple term haunted his thoughts more than anything in the world.”
While I don’t want to give too much away this incident leads to Hunter and Elly’s Uncle Joe to travel to Belmonte Estate to look after them during their time of need. Not only do they have their uncle with them but they start to make friends. We are introduced to Alistair and Olivia, two other kids their age that are going to be going to school with them at the estate. Not only do they have friends to hang out with, but friends to help them discover the secrets to what is going on in this mansion, and to stop the Beast of Bladenboro.
In addition we are also introduced to Margot, a woman that has captured not only the hearts of Hunter and Elly with her kind and compassionate actions but also Uncle Joe. Plus their is Plato, the loveable android that I cannot wait to learn more about. As well as the adorable Trayer (I want one!) , a Cusith that acts as a loveable puppy and guard dog to Elly. And finally Professor Calenstine who is full of knowledge, life experience, and I cannot wait to learn more about him.
Overall I loved this book because of the underlying message. Yes, the detailed imagery was awesome, the spin on mythological characters was fun too, but the sense of family is what really made me love this story. Family is what you make it, and although Elly and Hunter will forever miss their parents they are not alone.
“For the first time since his parent’s demise, he felt like a family once again. No matter how strange and bizarre his journey into the mansion had been, there was no other place in the world he would rather be at the moment. It was, in all honesty, the first time he peered out his bedroom window not longing to escape and run away.”
I’m excited to watch Hunter and Elly grow and to see what other kinds of mischief they will get into. This book is perfect for any age. Parents would love to read this to their kids, and adults would love to read this to escape their own mundane lives. E.L. Hickey gives us a feast for our imaginations and I can’t wait to read what’s next!
Also make sure to check out my interview with J.L. Hickey here