- Reading level: 9 - 11 years
- Paperback: 336 pages
- Publisher: Yearling (13 March 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0552572314
- ISBN-13: 978-0552572316
- Product Dimensions: 13 x 2.1 x 19.4 cm
- Average Customer Review: 1 customer review
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #3,90,473 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The London Eye Mystery Paperback – 13 Mar 2014
|Paperback, 13 Mar 2014||
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"Dowd's story grips the reader from the opening chapter . . . Her first book was a deservedly acclaimed young adult novel . . . this demonstrates her versatility" (The Sunday Times)
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"This is a novel that works on every level, not least as a thoroughly gripping detective story" (Sunday Telegraph)
"This is a wonderfully written mystery. It is funny, nerve-wracking and tender by turns, with plenty of pace and excitement as well as some moments for serious reflection" (School Librarian)
A thrilling adventure story - after Ted's cousin Salim disappears from a pod in mid-air on the London Eye, he and his sister become embroiled in a race against time to find him.See all Product description
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Top customer reviews
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
The mystery is of the locked room variety. Our sibling heroes Ted and Kat sift through different theories, investigate, follow clues, and have adventures tailing and questioning witnesses and suspects. There are some shortcuts taken and a few lucky hunches, but this sticks closely enough to the fair side of mystery solving that I would expect most readers to be satisfied. And, for a younger reader's mystery book this struck me as definitely superior. It doesn't have the cheats, (overheard conversations, wild guesses and hunches, clues appearing in dreams, etc.), that mar lots of junior efforts.
As to the heroes, I thought the author caught the general sense of Asperger's well enough. Ted sort of drifts in and out of the condition as the plot, narrative, and pacing require, so this isn't terribly rigorous. On the other hand it gives a fair sense of Ted being differently abled, and for a younger read I was happy with that. Ted is such a cheerful, honest and amiable companion that that shines through no matter where you come out on the Asperger's. It helps that sister Kat is also well fleshed out. Sometimes books like this revolve so much around the Ted-character that everyone else pales. Here, Kat is a real player in the narrative. Indeed, even the missing boy's parents, Ted's parents, and the police inspectors get to be characters of some weight, so you also get family drama and suspense, which adds variety and fullness to the tale.
This is a bit longish but I was surprised at the fast pace that was maintained. Scenes change quickly and the investigation progresses apace, with a nice balance of action bits and thinking about the case. It felt like this would be an attention holder.
So, I imagine that declaring that a book is better than expected seems like faint praise, so let me be clear that I thought this was a top drawer young reader mystery and an entertaining find.
What intrigue, fun, and amazing depth in The London Eye Mystery by Siobhan Dowd! What's the book about? Aunt Gloria and her son, Salim, come to London to say goodbye to Ted and Kat's family before heading for a new life in New York. The sisters and kids decide to take in a final day of sightseeing. Salim ends up on the Eye by himself but he never gets off! What happened to Salim?
Told in first person point-of-view by Ted, a 12 year old on the autism spectrum, this book is a gem for many reasons. As a read-aloud or for kids in upper elementary and older, this book is loaded with enough material to satisfy readers and teachers alike. All the characters in the book are well-developed. Themes abound. The clues are intriguing, the mystery is a real page turner, and the shattering reality of a missing kid is not glossed over.
The portrayal of the thoughts and actions of a kiddo on the autism spectrum is a primary accomplishment of this book. Seriously, that is no mean feat. Ted talks to us about his brain with its different operating system, relates his never-ending and complex thoughts on weather systems, and lets us know when he's stressed, including habitual hand shaking and occasional banging and kicking walls. Poor Ted. I'd bang walls in his position, too. If ONLY his family would listen to Ted!
Ted's sister, Kat, is a tweener in rebellion against her mum, secretly smoking and often lying, and cursing several times in the book. While reading this aloud, I left out most of those words. On the other hand, I appreciate the author's authentic description of Kat's struggle to find her way while grappling with agonizing guilt over Salim's disappearance.
As a special ed teacher, I'd use this book to develop empathy among neurotypical learners for those whose brain are on IOS-Autism. Kids on the spectrum are at risk for bullying and this book would be a terrific tool for countering those prejudices. The London Eye Mystery could also validate kids who have been made aware of their diagnosis of ASD.
I was grieved to discover that Siobhan Dowd passed away in 2007 at the age of 47. She had devoted much of her life's energy to "tak[ing] stories to children and young people without stories." In the days before her death, she established The Siobhan Dowd Trust, a worthwhile project to supply books to those who otherwise couldn't access them. Siobhan Dowd definitely achieved her goal of giving a voice to kiddos like Ted. I encourage you to read the book and check out her foundation, where all royalties and funds from overseas sales provide hope for the voiceless.