Review By Gabrielle

Dive into this page-turner middle grade book. You won’t be able to put down The Jules Verne Prophecy.

Favourite Quote:

As I squeezed back through the stacks, something hit me. Like, really hit me. A big book came out of nowhere and knocked me on the head. “Ouch!” I said, bending down to pick it up. It was massive and definitely old. I was about to balance it on top of the nearest pile when I saw the name on the spine.

Jules Verne.

It was called La Prophetie de Jules Verne.

A Jules Verne book had landed in my lap. Okay, landed on my skull.

Goodreads Synopsis: 

Miranda Abbott, once known for the crime-solving, karate-chopping church pastor she played on network television, has hit hard times. Turned down for a role on a cable reality show, Miranda is facing ruin when a mysterious postcard arrives, summoning her to Happy Rock, a small town in the Pacific Northwest. But when she gets there, nothing is what she expected.

In dire straits, Miranda signs up for an amateur production at the Happy Rock Little Theater, competing against the local real estate agent for the lead role. In front of a packed house, one of the actors is murdered, live, onstage. But out of one hundred witnesses, no one actually saw what happened. Now everyone is under a cloud of suspicion, including the sardonic town doctor, the local high school drama teacher, an oil-stained car mechanic, an older gentleman who may or may not have been in the CIA—and Miranda herself. Clearly, the only way to solve this mystery is for Miranda to summon her skills as television’s Pastor Fran and draw on the help of her new sidekick, Susan, a shy bookstore clerk who seems to know everyone’s secrets. Because the show must go on!

Who doesn’t love an adventure? Well, this book has plenty of adventure to go around. I found myself furiously turning the pages to see what would happen next. I love treasure hunt style books, you can’t help but get sucked in and this is a good one. Lots of clues to solve to get to the next one and the added pressure of working against the bad guys to get there first. This book is nothing but fun from start to finish.

The Jules Verne theme made it extra fun and super nostalgic for those of us that have read any of his classic works. There are wonderful references to several of his books and the kids need to use their knowledge of Jules Verne to solve several clues. I also found myself learning a couple of things about Jules Verne in the process.

The story is told from Owen’s perspective with each chapter being marked with a date so we can follow along. I loved all the characters in this book. Owen, Nas and Rose are all great. Owen is the skateboarding new kid with a great sense of humour. Nas is the scaredy cat, sweet kid. Rose is the bold and brave rich kid. They may be an unlikely trio, but I liked how well they worked together and complemented each other. Bonus points for Nas’ family. I just loved his mom.

The authors have done a great job of capturing Paris. From the catacombs to le Musee des Arts et Metiers to Le Dome, each chapter gives us vivid descriptions of the places that make Paris one of the greatest cities in the world. You’ll be able to picture each location clearly, as if being there yourself.

If you have an adventure lover in your life, they’ll enjoy The Jules Verne Prophecy.