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The Calder Gameby Blue Balliett
Synopses & Reviews
Petra, Calder, and Tommy, the sleuths at the center of the amazing CHASING VERMEER and THE WRIGHT 3, are back with a labyrinthine new mystery to solve.
When Calder Pillay travels with his father to a remote village in England, he finds a mix of mazes and mystery . . . including an unexpected Alexander Calder sculpture in the town square. Calder is strangely drawn to the sculpture, while other people have less-than-friendly feelings towards it. Both the boy and the sculpture seem to be out of place . . . and then, on the same night, they disappear! Calder's friends Petra and Tommy must fly out to help his father find him. But this mystery has more twists and turns than a Calder mobile . . . with more at stake than first meets the eye.
"Acclaimed for her sophisticated juggling of art concepts, mystery, philosophy and storytelling, Balliett (Chasing Vermeer) outdoes herself with this ambitious novel. Like its predecessors, it asks readers to consider big ideas, this time using the mobiles of Alexander Calder as a springboard. Now in seventh grade, series heroes Petra, Tommy and Calder first see Calder's mobiles at an exhibit at a Chicago museum. There they are introduced to the 'Calder game,' which invites participants to join five ideas or things that move in relation to one another, while looking for 'balance, beauty, and surprise.' Three weeks later, Calder accompanies his father to a tiny town near Blenheim Palace in England, where an anonymous donor has installed a Calder sculpture in the ancient town square, much to the villagers' dismay. Curiously, Calder's own presence seems to inspire dismay as well — until he, and the sculpture, simply vanish overnight. The mystery is crafted more solidly than in either of Balliett's previous titles, and the setting — enriched by the hedge maze of Blenheim and the possible proximity of the pseudonymous British artist Banksy — proves completely enticing. And once again Helquist encodes his b&w illustrations with puzzle pieces. Motivated readers will treasure this provocative title. Ages 9 — 12." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Those precocious young sleuths Calder, Petra and Tommy return in another art-themed mystery by the author of "Chasing Vermeer" and "The Wright 3." This one, the most convincingly plotted of the three, is set in England, where Calder and his dad are visiting. Is it pure coincidence that Calder vanishes just as an enormous Alexander Calder sculpture disappears from an Oxfordshire village square? Of course... Washington Post Book Review (read the entire Washington Post review) not. Luckily, Calder's dad thinks to fly Tommy and Petra in from Chicago to help the inept British police search in and around the intimidating Blenheim Palace maze. The three kids are the earnest goody-goodies they've always been, but Balliett has a lot of fun riffing on the themes of change over time, shifting relationships, primary colors and the number five, all embodied in Alexander Calder's fabulous mobiles. Elizabeth Ward can be reached at warde(at symbol)washpost.com. Reviewed by Elizabeth Ward, Washington Post Book World (Copyright 2006 Washington Post Book World Service/Washington Post Writers Group)
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From the author/illustrator team behind the international bestseller "Chasing Vermeer" comes their latest mystery featuring three amateur teen detectives. This time, Tommy and Petra must fly to England when Calder disappears in a remote English town.
Calder Pillay travels with his father to a remote village in England and is inexplicably drawn to a sculpture of Alexander Calder. Both the boy and the sculpture seem out of place. Then, they both disappear. Calder's friends Petra and Tommy must help Calder's father find him. Illustrations.
I can't tell you. But there are at least two clues in the key note and two in the selling points.
About the Author
Blue Balliett is the author of several bestselling, acclaimed mystery novels, including Chasing Vermeer (a Book Sense Book of the Year and an Edgar Award winner), The Wright 3, The Calder Game, and The Danger Box. She writes in the laundry room of her home in Chicago, Illinois, and you can find her online at www.blueballiettbooks.com.
Brett Helquist was born in Ganado, Arizona, and grew up in Orem, Utah. He entered Brigham Young University as an engineering major, but soon realized this was not the right choice for him. Having decided to take time off from college, he headed to Taiwan where he stumbled into a job illustrating English textbooks, which he enjoyed. There, a friend introduced him to an illustration student, also from Brigham Young University. This introduction inspired Brett to eventually switch majors. After spending a year in Taiwan, he went back to BYU and transferred to the illustration department. In 1993 he received a fine arts degree in illustration.
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