A Perilous Journey of Danger and Mayhem: A Dastardly Plot



Title: A Perilous Journey of Danger and Mayhem: A Dastardly Plot 
Author: Christopher Healy
Publisher: Walden Pond Press 
Publication Date: September 25th, 2018 
Genre/Format: Historical Fiction/Middle Grade Novel 
GoodReads Summary: It's 1883—the Age of Invention! A time when great men like Thomas Edison, Alexander Graham Bell, Nicola Tesla, and George Eastman work to turn the country into a land of limitless opportunity.

And it all happens at the world famous Inventor’s Guild headquarters in New York City—a place where a great idea, a lot of hard work, and a little bit of luck can find you rubbing elbows with these gods of industry who will usher humanity into the future.

Unless, of course, you’re a woman.

Molly Pepper, daughter of brilliant but unknown inventor Cassandra Pepper, lives with her mother in New York. By day, they make ends meet running a pickle shop; but by night, they toil and dream of Cassandra taking her place among the most famous inventors in America.

In an attempt to find a way to exhibit Cass’s work at the World’s Fair, they break into the Inventor's Guild, where they discover a mysterious plot to destroy New York.
The evidence points to the involvement of one of the world’s most famous inventors, and now it’s up to Molly, Cassandra, and a shop hand named Emmett Lee to uncover the truth—even if no one will ever know it was they who did it. 
What I Think: I already loved Christopher Healy's Hero's Guide series and how he portrayed the female characters in that series but now there is more girl power to love from him! A Perilous Journey of Danger and Mayhem is such a fun blend of historical fiction and girl power and adventure.
     As a mentor text, there is really rich description throughout the entire book. You could easily find many examples of how word choice makes an impact on what message the writer makes. Chris describes using very specific words and he also shows readers what is happening using the five senses. As I was listening to the audiobook sample, I realized how great he described the pickle shop and how he also was able to tell us about Molly by showing us that she lives there as well. I pulled the snatch of text below that you'll also hear in the audiobook clip. I would ask writers to close their eyes and listen to the sample. Ask them to visualize as they listen. Then I would show them the snatch of text below and ask them to think about how describing the setting helps a reader and how it can even help a reader understand the character. You could even ask writers to think about their own character and draw their room or closet. This is an opportunity to think about how the room is organized (or not!) and what is found there. Then they could write a paragraph or two describing the room or setting and show readers about their character using this technique. All of this tells us about the character and is a neat way to explore a character. 
Snatch of Text: "For the most part, Pepper's Pickles looked like any of the other specialty food establishments along the bustling thoroughfare that was Thompson Street. Upon entering, customers would see barrels of fermenting cucumbers and a wooden counter stacked with murky jars of dill spears. They would smell a tang in the air from the canisters of salt and flasks of vinegar crammed onto shelves. But few took note of the tall folding screen that protected the rear half of the store from prying eyes.
     If a customer were to peek behind that screen, however - which none did without feeling the sting of a shot from Molly's Thimble Cannon - they would see a long worktable littered with springs, screws, bolts, gears, and tools of every time. And the'd see two thin beds, a stove-top, and a clothesline drooping with damp bloomers. Because the Peppers also lived in their pickle shop." (p. 5)
Audiobook Clip: Listen here.

 Here are the tour stops:
September 24th - Novel Novice
September 26th - Unleashing Readers
September 27th - Teach Mentor Texts
September 28th - Novel Novice
September 29th - Maria’s Melange
October 1st - The Flashlight Reader
October 2nd - Nerdy Book Club
October 3rd - Book Monsters
October 3rd - Novel Novice
October 4th - Blustocking Thinking

And don't forget the giveaway! a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks to Walden Pond Press
for sending me a copy of this book to review 
and for partnering with me for this giveaway.

Comments

  1. Historical fiction, girl power, and adventure - sounds like a great read!

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