The Name of This Book is Secret! by Pseudonymous Bosch

You know you've stumbled on a good read when the first thing the author tells you is to put the book down. There's just something about doing something against the rules that I like, especially when it isn't too bad ... like reading a book.

Cass is a survivalist, well ... as much of a survivalist you can be at age 11. She is on constant watch for possible disasters, like the risk that her school was built on a toxic waste dumping ground, and they could all be poisoned at any second! Ok, when she noticed the dying grass, and the dead rats, she may have jumped to conclusions ... a little.

Max-Ernest has an as yet undefined condition characterized by excessive talking and question asking. For instance, he asks everyone in his entire class the same riddle separately, hoping to make someone laugh (he is an aspiring comedian) ... but sadly, no one does laugh. Although, Cass is the first one to point out that his riddle isn't really a joke. Maybe that's what brought them together. They both needed a friend.

The second thing that brought them together? The Symphony of Smells, a cool box of vials with different liquids of various scents, each labeled with a corresponding word. While neither of them is quite sure what the purpose of this is, they are convinced that it has something to do with magic. They got the box from a magician's house, after all! They decide to investigate further, and come across his (very tricky) notebook.

It tells the tale of Pietro and Luciano, twin brothers who experience synethesia (which is tricky to describe, but mostly means they can hear colors, smell words, their senses are all mixed up!). They join the circus together at a young age, and use their talents to wow the audience. One day, however, the evil blonde lady comes and steals Luciano away! Pietro searches, but never sees him again.

Cass and Max-Ernest can hardly believe it! Such a story! Most of all, they want to help Pietro...but they aren't sure how to go about it. That is until Cass comes up with a crazy plan...which I can't tell you about. Why? Because it's SECRET!

Great puzzle elements embedded within, along with fun facts that enable learning. I played along and figured out (almost) every code. The last one is trickier. I can't wait to read the sequel!
"Generally speaking, books don't cause much harm. Except when you read them, that is. Then they cause all kinds of problems," (Bosch, 2007).
*Library Link*

If you liked this, check out:
If You're Reading This, It's Too Late by Pseudonymous Bosch
NERDS: National Espionage, Rescue and Defense Society by Michael Buckley
The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart

Bosch, Pseudonymous. (2007). The Name of This Book is Secret. New York, NY: Little, Brown.

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