Eshusdaughter's Reviews > The Mysterious Benedict Society

The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart
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's review
Feb 24, 2008

it was ok
bookshelves: young-readers, read-in-2008

Reynie, Kate, Sticky, and Constance are four very gifted children with a mission. They call themselves The Mysterious Benedict Society and together they have to infiltrate the nefarious Learning Institute for the Very Enlightened - a psuedo-school run by the evil Mr. Curtain. It's up to these four disimilar and intrepid kids to save the world and of course they are completely up to the task.

I thnk this book will have broad appeal to under-12s. The length of the book threw me off - it was so long I assumed it was a YA novel but instead it is definitely a kid's book. Along the lines of Lemony Snicket it has the same sort of irrevernt feel and tone. Plausability has no place in this book.

I don't dislike the book but I don't like it either. I think the plot was too simplistic. The book is too long, with little point, the plot is at times circuitous and the characters show little to no character growth, they are the same in the end as when you met them. The bad-guys are cookie cutter baddies with cardboard personalties and evil or thuggish for the sake of being evil or thuggish. There's no great lesson in these pages. I find little of substance in it at all to be honest. There were a couple good lines, some good description and, at least at first, I found the characters quirky and appealing.

In a book this size I expect to see some character growth and I think that more than anything is what irks me. There is no real change. It's all surface for the characters. They beat the bad guy, win the day and *poof* everything is happy and wonderful. It feels trite and simplistic.
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Reading Progress

February 24, 2008 – Shelved
Started Reading
April 14, 2008 – Shelved as: young-readers
April 14, 2008 – Shelved as: read-in-2008
April 14, 2008 – Finished Reading

Comments (showing 1-6 of 6) (6 new)

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message 1: by Lulu (last edited Apr 09, 2009 06:47AM) (new)

Lulu im from ireland but i went to america last year and loved it. i found the mysterious bendict society in Barnes and Nobles. i first didn't want to buy it as it was very long(as you said) but i started reading it and found to love it. i loved the characthers espeicially Kate, for some reason i now always bring a bag around with me everything i need from plasters to rope! not the same as a bucket but ah,who cares. i dissagree with you about the book being too simple as something dramatic isn't up my street but it is great to see someone elses perspective.

Cade Walker Three words for ya, READ THE SEQUEL

Cade Walker this is the 2nd best book i have ever read. (the best is the left behind kids series)

Julie I completely, completely agree with you!

Patricia Jasmin Simplistic? Trite? Dude, read the the other 2 books. The series deserve a lot more than 2 stars.

Charlotte I just finished the first book in series and feels exactly the same. After reading the comment I decide to read the other 2 books

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