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The Danger Box

3.54 of 5 stars 3.54  ·  rating details  ·  1,339 ratings  ·  266 reviews
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.
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published September 1st 2010 by Scholastic Press (first published 2010)
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Community Reviews

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I'm a fan of Blue Balliett's Chasing Vermeer, The Wright 3 and The Calder Game, so when I found The Danger Box on the shelf, I picked it up - for my eleven and nine year daughters to read - but also for me. I enjoyed this book, but not nearly as much as Balliett's previous ones.

The Danger Box is the story of Zoomy, a young boy who lives with his grandparents in a small Michigan town. Zoomy is legally blind and can only see clearly without glasses the length of one finger and with glasses only an
Charlyn  Trussell
Blue Balliett's mysteries always have a lot packed into them and this one is no exception. The primary narrator is Zoomy, a child with pathological myopia which renders him almost blind and with OCD. Apparently left on his grandparents doorstep by his mother, Zoomy has been happily reared in a small town by them. Their son Buckeye, his father, disappeared long ago and is unaware of the child left behind. When he arrives back in town in a stolen truck, he leaves a mysterious box in which Zoomy fi ...more
Dana \\i believe in the sky//
The Danger Box. Ahhh <3

Just kidding.

i picked up this book when I saw it at the library for a number of reasons:

1) Ooh that's an...... interesting cover. Rather reminds me of this one, another personal favorite: Three Black Swans by Caroline B. Cooney
2) Ooh Blue Balliett!!!! I read her book Chasing Vermeer and thoroughly enjoyed it in fourth grade and I assumed that that meant that her other books were all equally entertaining. Alas!
3) Ahh the blurb is so.... intriguing!
4) Omg dat TITLE~! It just sounds amazing and interesting and
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
The Danger Box is the third middle school/YA book that I've read this year that relates to the life of Charles Darwin. This book introduces two new kid sleuths: Zoomy, who suffers from myopia and probably OCD, and Lorrol, a brainy girl who is proud of the fact that her name is a palindrome. Zoomy and Lorrol end up immersed in a mystery involving a lost notebook of Darwin. I'm not sure that I liked this book as much as Chasing Vermeer or The Wright Three, but it's close. This book felt a bit dark ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Have you ever wondered whats it like being able to notice so many things that other people don't even notice at all? Well if you do this book is for you. The genre of this book is fiction, mystery.This book is really interesting.

This book is about a kid named Zoomy that lives in a small town in Michigan where he was left at the front of the steps of his grandparents house by his father when he was a baby. Hes life is great and he is a very happy child besides him being a OCD and having no friend
Marcos Tavares

Quando peguei esse livro, resolvi ler algumas sinopses do mesmo antes de começar a leitura. Acabei pegando um spoiler (que não reproduzirei na resenha), mas que me motivou a começá-lo logo, uma vez que trazia um tema que adoro estudar e que nunca vi ser trabalhado em literatura infanto-juvenil.


O Sr. Zip era um homem muito rico e que adorava charadas. Um dia ele resolveu fazer uma grande gincana. Colocou um misterioso objeto dentro de uma caixa e a escondeu em algum lugar dos Est
I am undeniably biased when reviewing this book/author. Nonetheless, this has to be Blue Balliett's most exciting book yet.

If you open the Danger Box you won't be able to put it down! Balliett's combination of mystery and science is a middle-grade treat and her compassionate characters help us understand different perspectives. This book is sure to delight fans new and old. Perfect for family reading or curious young readers in search of a smart adventure story.
Ashelley Melber
I can't tell you how much I enjoyed reading The Danger Box. I could connect with it so well not being like everyone else. Reading this book shows you two things and I think it is something everyone can connect to on a personal level.

This book has to do with a boy trying to find out who this journal he found belongs to. The two main characters are different from everyone else they don't belong in this strange judgmental world so they become two peas in a pod. I saw deeper than two kids trying to
How do I love Blue Balliet's books? Let me count the ways. 1) "Worry crumbs" 2) "ping-ness" 3) quirky lovable protagonists 4) Nail-biting mystery
Addison Children
I should have known better, as I'm not a big fan of Chasing Vemeer. I thought this was a very confusing book. There's a box that's supposed to be delivered by four separate messengers to a man who is dead. Then there's a legally blind boy whose up-to-then believed dead father inadvertently steals the box from the last messenger (who wasn't going to deliver it anyway). Then there's a journal that's in the box. (another story) Then there's The Gas Gazette. (a newsletter blindish boy and his friend ...more
The Danger BoxBy Blue Balliett
304 pages
I thought the book was okay I would give it 3 stars. I Was expecting a lot more mystery and thrill. I think the book at first was a little misleading. I liked the writing style. I also love books with really short chapters so that was a plus. I thought that the characters weren't really developed, I kind of got a feel for zoomy but not really anybody else. I was kind of hoping for more from Lorrol. Anyways I thought the book was alright just a bit undevelo
Heather Hopkins Roberts
I am almost done this book and had no idea that Charles Darwin was such a deep ad empathetic man. He was a family man who lvoed his children and was devastated by the loss of his 10 year old daughter. He also knew his theory of evolution would be contreversial and was a man of science. For as much as his theory is discussed and even sadly discounted, but then so is global warming and we can actually see that for ourselves; I had no idea how interesting and complex Mr. Darwin was personally till ...more
IndyPL Kids Book Blog
“Mr. Zip had told no one, not one living soul,about his scheme. He had counted on survival.

That, as it turned out, was a mistake; death changed all the rules.” (page 4)

Mr. Zip dies after setting in motion an elaborate plan involving a box and something secret that is hidden in it. Because he’s dead, he isn’t there to see his plan carried out and can’t make an adjustment when pieces of his plan fall apart…like the box being stolen, hunted down, hidden, and then stolen again.

Zoomy and his Grandpar
Over the past few years, Blue Balliett has entertained young, middle readers with mysteries that are suspenseful and full of puzzles while providing some sophisticated cultural references for children. In this story, Blue pushes her boundaries a bit while maintaining her signature style. Set in rural Michigan the reader meets Zoomy, a 12 year old living with his grandparents, who help him cope and accept his pathological myopia and slight autism. He keeps his world in order by maintaining lists. ...more
I'll tell you what got me hooked about reading this book, and that was the page right before the table of contents....

'Author's Note: Opening the Box
ONE OF THE objects in The Danger Box is real. It was stolen from its owners a long time ago and is still missing. It is fragile, easily recognized around the world, too valuable to put a price on, and could fit in your pocket. In wondering where it is today and dreaming up this mystery, I also thought about how: 1- Every book is a box of ides. 2-Ev
Brenna Call
This books minimalist description is the first thing that really caught my eye. The synopisis gives you just enough to hook you and I liked that. I am drawn toward well crafted suspenseful mysteries and this book didn't disappoint. This book is like an onion with many layers. At first glance this book appears to be a mystery about how a few seemingly unrelated people, events, or things come together to create a kind of domino effect that becomes the bulk of the story. But what is not indicated b ...more
Nicola Mansfield
Reason for Reading: I really only read this because I had received a review copy in the mail. I don't think it would have normally appealed to me otherwise.

I'm sorry it took me so long to read this book as I really enjoyed it. I love mysteries, as an adult, but don't usually read kid mysteries often except as read alouds and then I stick with tried and true authors I already know. Blue Balliett is new to me, so I haven't read her other critically acclaimed books but if this is only a sample of h
"A secret of a secret of a secret." Although the premise itself was interesting and why I got it to read to the kids, Zoomy and that phrase is what kept me reading the entire book although I had merely planned on simply skimming the pages before reading it to the children. :) The writing is simple but engaging; a quick read. And what a wonderful way to introduce Darwin and his theory even if you don't believe in his philosophy since this is more about the man than his theory. I had no idea Darwi ...more
From September 2010 SLJ:
Gr 58Balliett's latest mystery explores the intricacies of scientific discovery. Wealthy Mr. Zip has arranged for a priceless treasure, stolen years ago, to be delivered to him. He will indulge his dream of savoring this object, and then will return it to society, a magnanimous gesture that will ensure that he is remembered as a hero. Sadly, before the treasure reaches him, Mr. Zip dies of a heart attack. When a mysterious man in possession of the box learns about this, h
Balliett's previous books have marvelous puzzles that the protagonists and the readers must solve. The puzzle in this book is less well developed and doesn't integrate into the story well. The story is about a 12 year old boy who is legally blind and may have Asperger's Syndrome. Zoomy, as he is called, lives with his grandparents in a small town in Michigan. His alcoholic father, who does not realize that he has a son, pays an unexpected visit to have his parents keep a box that was in a truck ...more
The Danger Box

This book is a middle school teacher's dream. It can easily be integrated with mathematics, science, Social Studies and, of course, English Language Arts. There is the requisite disability or two, one which is never named and one which is, so we can have a general discussion about disabilities in class. And we’ll talk about bullying, also. The book even has built in discussion questions and projects! The topic that drives the plot (which I won’t mention here so that your reading is
This was my first experience reading a Blue Balliett(Chasing Vermeer)mystery for young adults. It was outstanding, however much of what makes it a special read may be over the heads of younger readers. Zoomy, the almost teen protagonist is OCD and probably ASD, which explains why he is so tenacious in unraveling the mystery of why his loser bio-dad has suddenly turned up, threatened Zoomy's wonderful grandparents and left behind a very old, very unusual, scientific journal. Younger readers will ...more
Caitlin Hoffer
Reminds me of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime by Mark Haddon. Although it is never stated that the child has Asperger's Syndrome, I would say it's definitely a possibility. The way Zoomy thinks, lists, taps his chin and loses it when things change unexpectedly point to Asperger's for me. As I lay in bed after I finished this book though, I thought to myself about what it matters whether or not Zoomy has Asperger's, and for this story it really doesn't. He is also legally blind, ...more
Zoomy arrives on his grandparents' doorstep as such a tiny infant that he fits in a cat carrier...which is exactly how he's delivered. The Chamberlains embrace Zoomy and raise him with love, hope, and understanding. He is the child they lost when Buckeye left. Zoomy is specail in his own way. First, he has darker skin than any Chamberlain has ever had, second he is legally blind, and finally he has either OCD or Asperger's syndrome so he demands an orderly life. His life is orderly until Buckeye ...more
"Clever" is the single most descriptive word for Blue Balliett's young adult novels. Her obvious love of puzzles is interwoven in the format, plot, characters, and setting. I have to admit that in the beginning of The Danger Box, I wasn't sure it was going to live up to her previous three novels featuring Calder and Petra. I was most pleasantly surprised that Balliett could work her magic in a stand-alone novel as well. Zoomy, a legally blind and autistic 12-year-old, is the perfect vehicle for ...more
Elaine Bearden
gr 5-8
This is definitely a spooky, mysterious story, beginning with the cover. It echoes Konigsburg and Raskin with the mystery and perhaps even When You Reach Me, because of the changing point of view, and multiple storylines. This was an interesting read with some great characters and a puzzle to put together as to how the characters connect. However, I wasn't entirely convinced that the main character was as old as he was supposed to be, as he had some behaviors I thought were applicable to a
Phong-le Nguyen
Zoomy's life was ordinary from the day he was a baby. Zoomy lived with his grandparents named Grandpa Ash and Grandma Al. While Grandma Al does the cooking and half the gardening, Grandpa Ash goes to the store. The store is where Grandpa Ash sells antiques, although sometimes he helps with gardening. And Zoomy does the watering and weeding in the garden.That was all Zoomy's life was all about. Until he found the "dangerous box".

Buckeye was the one that who gave him the dangerous box. Inside th
Daniel Nguyen
this book is about this man who got something really precious and sends it to people to deliver it to a safe place. then it ends up in the back of a pick up truck. in this book a boy looks inside it and found a diary with list and memos of things. the diary dated back from 1865! then all of a sudden his granparent's store caught on fire and he and his new friend laurrel trys to capture the person who did it.

(i forgot his name) he was living with his grandparents. his grandpa owns a store that gi
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I was born in New York City and grew up playing in Central Park, getting my share of scraped knees, and riding many public buses and subways. By the time I was a teenager, I sometimes stopped at the Metropolitan Museum of Art or the Frick Museum after school, just to wander and look and think. The Met has five Vermeer paintings and the Frick three, so Vermeer and I have been friends for many years ...more
More about Blue Balliett...
Chasing Vermeer (Chasing Vermeer, #1) The Wright 3 (Chasing Vermeer, #2) The Calder Game (Chasing Vermeer, #3) Hold Fast Pieces and Players

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“Every book is a box of ideas.” 7 likes
“I don't know how anyone else sees the world and no one else sees the world exactly how I see the world! We each see in our own, unique way.” 5 likes
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