The second in the Sherlock Hong Adventures series, this book is chockfull of action and is guaranteed to keep you or your child at the edge of your seat.
It's 1891 and Sherlock Hong is an intrepid youngster in Singapore dying to solve the strange mysteries that he encounters. In this book, he has to save a little girl, the Peranakan princess, from the evil Tan Yah Yah who wants her make a killing in the black market.
It turns out that the princess is in possession of the contents of The Book of Secrets that has been translated into song. As the last living descendent who is able to sing it, she is a very precious asset indeed.
The book is fast-paced and is written in such a way that makes it easy to read aloud. When I met the author, he mentioned that when he wrote the book, he kept that at the forefront of his mind as he wanted it to be a book that parents could easily read to their children. It is amazing that although the sentences are short and simple, it did not make the story any less interesting.
I read the book twice and felt that it would be really interesting to the target audience of primary school students. As an educator, I have half a mind of using this book as a text to engage some of my students who are reluctant readers. With supernatural elements of magic and more, it is a text that would definitely capture the attention of young readers.
The only negative feedback I have is how suddenly the character Idris White is introduced and the accompanying plot twist he brings. When I first read it, I thought it was rather abrupt and felt a little forced. However, on my second reading, I just zoomed past it without noticing it. I guess it depends on how immersed one is in the plot.
I would recommend this book to parents of primary school kids. They could read it independently or for slower readers, read to by their parents.
You can get your copy at Kinokuniya or order it online from the Marshall Cavendish website. In addition, for my international followers, you can order it from Book Depository or Amazon.
Reviews on Books #3 and #4 and coming soon!
Check out the review on the first book in the series, The Immortal Nightingale here.
Disclaimer: I was provided with a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.