Blake Hoena is the author of more than 50 books for children, including DC Super Heroes chapter books, Sports Illustrated graphic novels, and the retellings of classic tales like the Perseus myth, but none of his books are as unique as his newest release. Campfire Crisis (Adventure Kids) is the result of mixing books for young readers, like The Magic Tree House with Choose Your Own Adventure books.
The book begins by introducing the three main characters and is told in the second person. The reader and his or her friends, Carla and Mike, are going camping with the reader’s parents, and for the first time will have their own campsite, separate from the adults. Each chapter presents a dilemma that the reader must choose a solution to, however, unlike the Choose Your Own Adventure books, the reader learns right away if they have made the right decision.
Campfire Crisis is a perfect mix of camping education and adventure, as reader and friends escape a campfire out of control and figure out how to make their way out of the woods. Each of the characters has their own strengths that help contribute to solving several problems. Sporadic illustrations are sparse, highlighting supplies or potential danger.
The end of the book includes tips for camping and a list of supplies for a survival kit. This is a great book to read before a first camping trip, either as a read aloud for a younger child or for a beginning reader. My son, finishing up fourth grade tomorrow, quickly flew through it and greatly enjoyed the story and the unusual format.
My kids and I both look forward to future books in this series.
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Nancy was a huge fan of Choose Your Own Adventure books as a kid, and is learning to like camping with her Cub Scouts. She writes about her boys, books and life in Colorado at Life With My Boys and Books.