'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
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Friday, 15 December 2017

Review: The Book of Secrets


What would you do if you saw something terrible but knew no one would believe you? If you were forced to run from the only home you’d ever known? If you found yourself alone in the woods with a book you knew people were willing to kill for…?

Gabe has grown up in the Abbey. It is a quiet, predictable life of ritual and prayer. He is content with the only life he knows. Then, everything changes in an instant. He is given a book by a dying man with instructions to tell no one and take it to Aiden…

What is this book and why is it so valuable? Gabe is entranced by its glittering, jeweled cover and mesmerised by the stunning illustrations that are unlike anything he has seen before. But the book makes no sense. It is not in any language he knows, the random letters seem to be some sort of code.

So begins Gabe’s adventure as he must leave the Abbey to keep the book out of the wrong hands. If only he could figure out what secrets the book holds, where he is supposed to take it and who Aiden is.

Along the way, Gabe must reconsider everything he has learned in his protected life in the Abbey. He must challenge his beliefs and accept that right and wrong are not a straightforward as he thought they were. He must face the reality of the real world, where hardship and injustice are rife, and you must be careful who you trust.

This is a riveting read that hooks you in from the first page and has you connecting immediately with the protagonist and his predicament. It is the first book in AL Tait’s new Ateban Cipher series and certainly leaves you hanging, wanting desperately to know if Gabe and his new friends will manage the journey to the book's ultimate destination and learn its secrets. My 10 year old loved this and can’t wait to read number two!

Look out for our special guest post with AL Tait coming up on 17 December discussing where inspiration comes from.


Title: The Book of Secrets (The Ateban Cipher #1)
Author: AL Tait
Publisher: Hachette, $14.99
Publication Date: 12 September 2017
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9780734417671
For ages: 8 - 12
Type: Middle Grade


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