Overall, I thought that Keith Nobbs did a pretty fair job at narrating this book. His girl voices could use a little work, but then again it's tough to be a girlish girl when you have a deeper voice :). I accept that. His pacing is spot on, and I loved the way that he would pause for dramatic effect at important points. Nobbs also does a great job at intoning danger and excitement.
Audio Book Rating: 4/5 - It's a great listen!
First off I find it only fair to say that I wasn't really paying attention to the fact that this was the third book in the series. I'm a long time fan of Andrew Clements, and when I saw The Whites of Their Eyes I knew I wanted to read it! So, I picked it up. Unfortunately for me that meant I came in at the middle of the story. I'll warn you, this is not a stand alone book. I had to go back and pick up pieces from the other two in order to understand what was going on. If you're looking at this series, make sure to start from the beginning!
That being said, I was pleased to see that Ben and his friends fit so wonderfully into the world of Clements' writing. They are vivid, funny, and smart. His characters always know how to hold their own. In particular (and I may be a little biased) I loved Jill. She not only has the wit to keep up with Ben, but a lot of the good ideas they come up with start with her. These two are fun to follow, even when they head off into dangerous situations. It's nice to see a female and male main character who both shine so boldly off the page.
The story does move a little more slowly than most books geared toward this age group generally do. There is a lot of historical background, and Ben does a lot of explaining about what his mission is. I had no problem with it as an older listener/reader, but I'm not sure that the younger audience would be as patient. Still, once the story picks up it does it very well! Clements' writing shines as Ben and Jill take off on a hunt for the ultimate treasure, and try to find a way to save their school from being torn down.
As a last comment, I really think that this installment should be coupled with the other two in one entire book. This was a short read, and it would be nice for readers to be able to get the entire story in one fell swoop. Despite everything though, I really did end up enjoying the story overall! If you have a young reader who loves adventure, pick up a copy of The Whites of Their Eyes and Ben's previous two adventures.