Seems most of my Friday Flashback books have featured girls as main characters. So, viola! This week’s chapter book stars a male lead character. Leepike Ridge, a 2008 high-adventure tale, penned by N.D. Wilson, takes readers on an adrenaline-producing literary ride.
Tom is a frustrated kid. His father was killed by greedy treasure hunters. His mom plans to marry again and Tom just can’t deal with this soon-to-be stepfather. Angry, Tom storms down to the river, floats downstream on a piece of styrofoam and ends up in treacherous waters. Pulled into the water that flows beneath a mountain, Tom finds himself in a series of intricately woven caverns, the same ones in which his late father searched for treasure. The dark, mysterious and complex caves contain many secrets, including a dead body, strange carvings and Reginald Fisher, his father’s research colleague who has been trapped in the caverns for three years. Together, Tom and Reg form an alliance determined to survive and make their way to freedom.
Paralleling their struggle topside, Tom’s mother fights to find her son. Refusing to give up, she desperately accepts help from the most nefarious of sources, the ruthless treasure hunters responsible for her husband’s death.
The narrative contains murder, some violence and stressful situations, but for mature chapter book readers or 5th or 6th graders, the fast pace and excitement will keep them hooked from cover to cover!
Written by N.D. Wilson
Accelerated Reader Level: 4.8