Danielle's Reviews > The Secret Spiral

The Secret Spiral by Gillian (Jill) Neimark
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's review
May 20, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: ebook, for-review, middlegrade
Read in June, 2011

Flor sticks out like a sore thumb in the midst of average everyday rectangle-liking ten year olds and even most adults as well. It's only her beloved Dr. Pi, the owner of Sky High Pies that can see the beauty in her flamboyant style sense and love her even more so because of it. It's Dr. Pi though that may be holding a secret to not only her past, but one that could alter the existence of everyone on the earth if it's discovered. When suddenly Dr. Pi goes missing Flor has but only one choice, save him and protect his secret, the spiral.

So, if you're completely confused by the introduction don't worry, it goes perfectly with the story. That being said, I thought The Secret Spiral by Gillian Neimark was a fantastically written journey filled with magic and mystery that reminded me much of Roald Dahl & Lewis Carroll stories. In the beginning of the story Flor seemed just like any other tween girl with a flare for her own sense of fashion, but as the story continued it turned out she was a bit more like James from James and the Giant Peach or even Alice having fallen down the rabbit hole. What her story made for was a magical adventure young readers will absolutely love.

Incorporated into this whacky tale are a few subtle mentions of mathematics that will possibly even have readers thinking about the universe as well. This is mentioned through the use of shapes and numbers, specifically spirals and often rectangles. In addition to that there are also two characters who are made up entirely of numbers, adding to the magical improbability of the story but making it a fun way of incorporating a small bit of learning along the way.

The Secret Spiral by Gillian Neimark was one of those reads that leaves you feeling a bit like you've fallen down the rabbit hole. It was magical and light mixed with a bit of mathematical education in the form of a spiral. Flor's life growing up with a single mother, abandoned by her father, is a story that many tween readers will most likely relate to on some level and will find comfort in her discoveries & self-confidence. A delightful journey through the magic of the spiral, one that tween readers will love and devour quickly.

Originally reviewed and copyrighted at my site There's A Book.
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