The Danger Box by Blue Balliett

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Title: The Danger Box

Author: Blue Balliett

Published By: Scholastic Press (2010)

Synopsis: An all-new mystery from the New York Times bestselling author of Chasing Vermeer and The Calder Game.

A boy in a small town who has a different way of seeing.
A mischievous girl who doesn’t belong.
A mysterious notebook .
A fire.
A stranger.
A death.

These are some of the things you’ll find within The Danger Box, the new mystery from bestselling author Blue Balliett. (Taken from Goodreads.)


I’m a little befuddled, a little amused, and a little satsified coming off this book.

It was a cute story that was well structured (for the most part) and had a solid, enthralling plot. Unfortunately, that plot was hard, if not impossible, to see until at least halfway through the book. I was a bit unsure what it was about when I began, and honestly, if I were to summarize what the book is about now, it would be all taken from the last half of the book.

It was a solid and cute story; the plot points were definable, unpredictable, and suspensful, and the characters were loveable, relatable and lots of fun. It had a very unique premise and such premise was delivered in a very unique way. I didn’t see hardly any of it coming.

However, it was very confusing. The tense switched back and forth between present and past, which, knowing the feel of the story surely was there for a purpose and reason, but to me it just seemed staggered and like the author changed her mind several times between the two tenses. It became very confusing. Also, the whole side plot with Mr. Zip and the “players” never really wrapped up or tied in clearly. I mean, yes it tied in, but that tie wasn’t clear or distinct and I’m honestly still very confused of how it was actually important to the story to begin with.

I suppose the Darwin element was creative, but it almost felt like the author was trying to tell us what to believe about it.

Also, maybe this is just me, but the way the story was told—in short, brief, random chapters through the eyes of a young, sheltered, slightly ‘different’ boy who ends up becoming the hero of the story thanks to his awesome sidekick who becomes his best friend after being a loner all his life—that way? I’ve read a million books written in that way and it just seemed cheesy and stereotypical. I don’t mean to say the author intended for it to be that way; I’m just saying to me that is how it came off.

Negative Content:


Rating: 2.0 / 5.0

Recommended to: Not recommended

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