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The Black Book of Buried Secrets (The 39 Clues)

4.12  ·  Rating Details  ·  7,196 Ratings  ·  138 Reviews
For the past five hundred years, the Cahills have silently dominated the world. Their desperate hunt for the 39 Clues lies behind some of history’s biggest enigmas – the curse of the Hope diamond, the race to summit Mt. Everest, the wild life and death of Harry Houdini. And now – finally – the secrets are out. With an introduction by Rick Riordan, The 39 Clues: The Black B ...more
Hardcover, 189 pages
Published October 26th 2010 by Scholastic Inc.
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The Maze of Bones by Rick RiordanInto the Gauntlet by Margaret Peterson HaddixThe Sword Thief by Peter LerangisOne False Note by Gordon KormanThe Dead of Night by Peter Lerangis
The 39 Clues
15th out of 39 books — 44 voters
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald DahlRodrick Rules by Jeff KinneyDiary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff KinneyJames and the Giant Peach by Roald DahlHow to Break a Dragon's Heart by Cressida Cowell
rodrick rules(over books)
26th out of 100 books — 8 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Rider JadeStone
Nov 29, 2010 Rider JadeStone rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 7th-grade, best-books
wow that book is THE BOMB!!! They make it sound so real! Wonderful, splendid, awesome, and a genius book!!!
Amber Ditullio
Nov 16, 2011 Amber Ditullio rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of the 39 Clues series
Shelves: teen-books
When I finished this book, all I could think was, "This is The 39 Clues version of The Demigod Files." And I say that as a good thing. It was a great way to reacquaint oneself with the major players before the Cahills vs Vespers series starts, plus is a great jumping off point for learning more about certain figures in history. Now, as far as I know, there is no great family of Cahills that have been maneuvering the world for 500 years (and if there was, since I'm not a Cahill, I wouldn't know, ...more
Mary Kate
May 30, 2011 Mary Kate rated it really liked it
A companion book to the popular 39 Clues series, The 39 Clues: The Black Book of Buried Secrets is a good bet, not only for the series' most die hard fans, but for those of us seeking some closure to a few of the threads left dangling at the end of The 39 Clues, Book 10: Into the Gauntlet. The book answers some questions, forces us to ask a few new ones, dangles a few new mysteries in our faces and gives us a chance to catch up with several of the series' major players since Gauntlet's end.

Dec 03, 2012 Minaal rated it really liked it
This is a book about the Cahills who are a family that are searching for 39 clues which will make them very powerful. In this book it just tells you about their lives and secrets in their families. This book is a basically a biography on the Cahills and their best agents.
I think they did good on describing everyone's thought and emotions. THey also explained each agent well. I think they could have improved on the stories and described the a little better.
I liked the book because it told me a lo
Dorian Becerra
Nov 24, 2015 Dorian Becerra rated it it was amazing
This book is the secrets of all the branches in the Cahill family in order to save their branches.I liked this book because Rick put the secrets in the open and I know everything about the Cahill branches without reading the other books to find out.I would recommend this book to people who like shortcuts and others who like The 39 Clues.
Mar 25, 2011 Leanna rated it liked it
I liked it cause it kinda gave you more information behind all the other books and what has happened to some of the characters since the ending of the 10th book. But it didnt have that appeal to keep reading.. I finished it more along the lines of okay so this might be helpful for the next book...and once I start a book it is hard for me to NOT finish it.. It has to really really suck OR scare
Sep 03, 2015 Tarissa rated it it was amazing
Great insight into the 39 Clues series for kids! Make sure to read only AFTER you've finished reading the first 11 books of the 39 Clues, as there's lots of "spoilers" if you haven't finished the others yet.

Lots of "extras" about the Cahills are included, as you get to know more about the agents from each family branch. Even more agents are introduced as participants in the Cahill's hunt for power. Want to know which branch that Barack Obama is from? Or Annie Oakley? Theodore Roosevelt? Nikola T
Aug 26, 2015 Caleb rated it it was amazing
This book is a collection of facts about the series (some you know and some you don't) that you read after set 1 of "The 39 Clues" series. I found it very intriguing the way Rick Riordan wrote the introduction and Mallory Kass wrote the book. I love all the different angles that were devised about famous people throughout history who are well known for their skills and how they would have been perfect members for the Cahill branches.

The author split up the book it several sections: first she sep
Jan 20, 2016 Sarah rated it it was amazing
This companion to the popular 39 Clues series is less a novel than a compilation of lists, reports, and vignettes. It shares information that was delivered through the collectible cards and online game, rather than in the books, which is useful for those who didn’t play along. It also contains several short stories about Cahills past and present; the latter form a narrative about the time between the 39 Clues and the upcoming Vespers Rising. The hidden codes and extra background are fun, but it’ ...more
Shelby Letner
Sep 14, 2011 Shelby Letner rated it it was amazing
Cool book. I loved how the winners of the game were included as characters in the beginning. It makes it all seem more real.
Jun 21, 2010 Luke marked it as to-read
Sounds like this is a full explanation of everything you could want to know in the whole series. I'm looking forward to this one!
Feb 02, 2011 Saige is currently reading it
i think it is fun book because it is fun to solve mysteries
Feb 18, 2011 Savita rated it it was amazing
Go Lucians! ...more
Sep 08, 2014 Heather rated it it was ok
2.5 stars.

This book was okay. Mostly it went over things that you learn in the books. There were these cool things called agent updates where you got to learn a few things about what happened after the books ended and those could be quite funny. It was also somewhat confusing at times. I don't think that I would read this book again, but now I can say that I have read it.
Steven R. McEvoy
Apr 30, 2012 Steven R. McEvoy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2012
This book is different from any of the other books in the 39 Clues Series I have read. It is almost a handbook or manual on the 5 branches of the Cahill family. It is also the only book that is not available as an eBook out of all the books across the three series. That being said, it is a beautiful book, every page is glossy full color.

The book, as mentioned, has a section for each of the 5 branches of the family. Each section has a history of the founder, current members, key past members, and
Jennifer Wardrip
Feb 11, 2011 Jennifer Wardrip rated it really liked it
Reviewed by Jennifer Rummel for

THE BLACK BOOK OF BURIED SECRETS takes all the information gathered by the five branches of the family and stores them together in one book. Each branch, including the Madrigals, spill their secrets and some identities of their agents - past and present.

While it doesn't advance the story of the Cahill family, readers will enjoy uncovering more information about THE 39 CLUES series and its characters.

This is a great finale to the first series where
I'm finished reading The 39 Clues: The Black Book of Buried Secrets by Rick Riordan.

This book was a great book for fans of the 39 Clues series. This a not a main book in the series, but it is a more informational book about the series and its characters. If you never read any of the books this would be confusing, but it also is kind of a catch up book if you didn't read a book or skipped it. It was a great book, but it was not that entertaining because it is mostly just facts and some stories,
I'm not sure how to rank it because it's not a story, but a companion piece to the 39 Clues series and a teaser for the new series. It was fun because I'm a fan, but it would be meaningless otherwise.

There were lots of funny, often sly digs, some interesting history, and even a touching moment or two. The pictures were all pretty much how I imagined everyone except for Grace, she should have looked like a cool old granny, not like a scary, fur-clad typical old lady. I liked that Saladin got som
Jul 22, 2011 Lee rated it it was ok
This review needs to be prefaced with the break up line "It's not you, it's me." I think this book will be a great resource for the upcoming series based on the 39 Clues. It gave a lot of background on the different branches of the Cahills, but it was a bit like reading through a dictionary - not meant as a stand alone entertaining read. Also, I still have two books of the 39 Clue series to read and this book contained major spoilers. All that being said, I really enjoy the series which introduc ...more
Elizabeth S
Feb 05, 2011 Elizabeth S rated it really liked it
Shelves: c-juvenile, z-2011
For fans of the 39 Clues series, this fills in a lot of interesting background information and prepares you for the new 39 Clues series coming in April. I enjoyed the additional insight into the original Cahill family, plus the background information given about most of the characters from the books.

I believe the book (and the other books in the series) are intended to help kids learn history and learn about other places. However, the authors do such a good job of interspersing the fictional sto
May 14, 2013 Nickie rated it it was ok
Shelves: august-2012-2013
I think I would have enjoyed it more if I read it immediately following the last book in the Clue Hunt. I found it more like trying to read a magazine. I was definitely more interested in some pieces over others. It is creatively done but does not have a plot which is makes it hard for me to give more than 2.5 stars to this. I had to read this in small sections over a period of time instead of the other books in the series I could sit down and read all at once and enjoy. I am hoping that as the ...more
Feb 08, 2016 Sue rated it liked it
Handbook of the characters of the 39 clues series. Tells a little about each family, strongholds, strengths, agents and founders of each branch of the family.
Jan 24, 2016 Jessica rated it really liked it
I loved getting to know some more of the back story to the other branches of the Cahills. FUN! ...and now, I'm desperate to start the Vespers series.
Chris Young
Dec 23, 2014 Chris Young rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Like the 39 clues book 11 vespers rising this book also shows the origins of the Cahill family including some things about them I didn't even know about.
Kellam Venosky
Apr 11, 2014 Kellam Venosky rated it really liked it
It's interesting to see the 'history' of the Cahills, especially after catching up on the other books. It makes more sense within the text of the Cahill branches.
Oct 10, 2014 Fran rated it did not like it
I think adding so much falsehoods to real people in the past isn't really a great idea for kids to be reading. That and it was pretty boring.
Mar 21, 2016 Cody rated it liked it
Gives you tidbits you'd otherwise miss out on. Not cohesive as far as a story goes, but comprised of small pieces that make a collective.
Mar 25, 2014 Payton rated it really liked it
I know that all of this was make believe history.There are somethings that aren't even in the series and somethings that repeat itself.
Marcia Adversalo
Sep 22, 2013 Marcia Adversalo rated it really liked it
As a huge fan of the 39 Clues series and someone who has read the entire series, this book was really cool! It gives you a lot of information about the different branches of the Cahill family, including weapons of choice, founding members, current agents, and strongholds. It was fun to see all of the people that were listed as current agents. There were also short selections showing how different members of the branches interact with each other. I really enjoyed this and only wish that I had rea ...more
May 07, 2011 Sabrina rated it really liked it
The Black Book of Buried Secrets is a quick and informative read that all fans of the 39 Clues will enjoy. It outlines information on every branch and also has a fantastic layout that includes many pictures and icons. It reveals new secrets and stories that took place before the Clue Hunt and directly after. Readers get to see what happens to Dan, Amy, Natalie, Ian etc. as their clue hunting days are done. But is the danger gone? Nay, remember that the Vespers are rising!

At times it seemed bori
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  • The 39 Clues: Agent Handbook
  • Vespers Rising (The 39 Clues, #11)
  • Ignition (The 39 Clues: Rapid Fire, #2)
  • A King's Ransom (The 39 Clues: Cahills vs. Vespers, #2)
  • The Medusa Plot (39 Clues: Cahills vs. Vespers, #1)
  • The Viper's Nest (39 Clues, #7)
  • Into the Gauntlet (The 39 Clues, #10)
  • Storm Warning (The 39 Clues, #9)
  • The Black Circle (The 39 Clues, #5)

Other Books in the Series

The 39 Clues (1 - 10 of 11 books)
  • The Maze of Bones  (The 39 Clues, #1)
  • One False Note (The 39 Clues, #2)
  • The Sword Thief (The 39 Clues, #3)
  • Beyond the Grave (The 39 Clues #4)
  • The Black Circle (The 39 Clues, #5)
  • In Too Deep (The 39 Clues, #6)
  • The Viper's Nest (39 Clues, #7)
  • The Emperor's Code (The 39 Clues, #8)
  • Storm Warning (The 39 Clues, #9)
  • Into the Gauntlet (The 39 Clues, #10)

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“Caught in a bad romance. Whoaaa-oh-ooooh!"
Nellie wailed along to the XM radio blaring from the enormous speakers.

"Can I uncover my ears now?" Dan called from the back, where he was reclined across the leather seat. "Has Nellie stopped her Lady Gag Me impression?”
“P.S. You'll have to meet with Dan's principal when you get back. He got in trouble for doing ninja moves in class. Don't worry. This happens all the time.” 33 likes
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