A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this story revolves around slavery and the slave trade. There are some scenes that are intense, sad, and suspenseful, and there's a reasonable amount of danger, but the danger and intrigue are part of any good mystery/adventure novel, which this is.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
Zac Baxter had always thought his grandfather's stories about his family being descendents of African kings and owners of lost gold as pure fairy tales, but when someone murders his grandfather and ransacks their home, he realizes there may be more truth in his grandfather's story than he realized. With unknown assailants chasing him and danger around every corner, Zac vows to track down the truth and the gold. Will he discover who he really is? What will it cost him? Who can he trust?
Is it any good?
This is a fantastic adventure story from new author Sarah Mussi. She has created a story rich in detail, intrigue, action, and history. Mussi's way of weaving the African slave trade into an adventure tale is refreshing; others authors have portrayed similar subject matter in a much more maudlin light, which is why this one feels so unique. Readers will love that Zac is a regular, black British teen thrust into a situation well over his head.
The story is rich, meaty, and great for confident readers, though even reluctant readers will enjoy this novel as long as they don't let the initial amount of detail and the book size scare them away. Parents will love the many avenues for discussion and the historical references throughout the work.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the importance of family history. Do you know your family's history? A great project for the whole family would be researching the family tree. Why is it important to know where you've come from? How would it feel not to know your family's history?
What did you learn from this book about the slave trade? Why would it be problematic if the descendents of African slaves chose and had a way to sue the governments of the countries that participated in the trade?
Which turns of the story surprised you the most? What part of the story was most dramatic?
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