Another Rotten Review

>> Monday, September 29, 2008

Something Rotten hasn't gone away just yet. Here's a good review of the audio book from School Library Journal:

The smell of the paper mill in Denmark, Tennessee, is Somtehing Rotten because the plant is dumping cancer-causing waste into the Copenhagen River. Teen detective Horatio Wilkes accompanies his best friend, Hamilton Prince, scion of the mill-owning family, home for summer vacation. The two are trying to answer questions surrounding Hamilton's father's death. Both boys suspect Prince's Uncle Claude, who quickly married the grieving widow. When they view a video left by the dead man, the investigation intensifies. With changes in names and events, Alan Gratz has mined Shakespeare's Hamlet for characters and situations in this mystery that also has a bit of romance. For example, Olivia, Hamilton's estranged girlfriend, crusades to clean up the pollution, but becomes very ill after drinking river water to publicize her cause. There's also a play within the novel, and two inept flunkies named Roscoe Grant and Gilbert Stern. While Horatio uncovers clues that point to Claude as the killer, his quick thinking also saves hard-drinking Hamilton from an untimely death. Erik Davies narrates as Horatio with cool prep school sophistication nicely balanced with droll humor. Fun to listen to as a whodunit, the novel also offers an ecology lesson and is an intriguing way to study the elements of the Elizabethan original. A worthwhile additional purchase for school and public libraries.

School Library Journal (Audio Book Review)

You can listen to the first few pages of Something Rotten on the media page of my website.


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