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Legend of the Star Runner: A Timmi Tobbson Adventure (Solve-Them-Yourself Mysteries for Kids 8-12) Paperback – May 22, 2018

4.7 out of 5 stars 483 ratings

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Frequently bought together

  • Legend of the Star Runner: A Timmi Tobbson Adventure (Solve-Them-Yourself Mysteries for Kids 8-12)
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From the Publisher

Kids book puzzle riddle mystery graphic novel chapter book for children 8-12 boys girls adventure

Where was the ancient key hidden?

A mysterious riddle describes a secret hiding place in Granpa's attic.

(This is a sample from the book. All pictures are cropped. Solving the puzzle requires reading the story.)

Kids book puzzle riddle mystery graphic novel chapter book for children 8-12 boys girls adventure

Kids book puzzle riddle mystery graphic novel chapter book for children 8-12 boys girls adventure

Kids book puzzle riddle mystery graphic novel chapter book for children 8-12 boys girls adventure

Kids book puzzle riddle mystery graphic novel chapter book for children 8-12 boys girls adventure

Editorial Reviews

Review

Foreword Reviews Magazine (scored 5 out of 5)
  • "A splendid homage to adventure"
  • "A visual feast"
  • "Large-hearted"

A spirited trio of kid sleuths undertake a classic treasure hunt in J. I. Wagner's Legend of the Star Runner. Taking its inspiration from video games and cloak-and-dagger mysteries, this story for middle-grade readers is a visual feast.


Lilli's grandfather is facing eviction. With the prospect of a pirate's treasure guiding them, she and her best friends, Marvin andTimmi, set out to find the loot to rescue him from his debts. A large-hearted, naïve, and wildly improbable plot delights as the fearless team - led by a treasure hunter - lands in a series of underground worlds.


Several twists and turns hinge on pure luck, timing, and uncanny perceptions. A reliance on video-game staples, including hidden passageways, trapdoors, puzzles, maps, and multiple-choice paths, sometimes threatens to turn the book into a high-concept maze. Still, what the story misses in the depth of its background, the illustrations make up for; they are smart compositions using chromatic palettes and feature clues. From a cluttered kitchen to the check-in desk at the Savoy to a wall of keys at an archive, scenes set a distinct mood for the story.


The tone is wisely calibrated; it's neither overly terrifying nor overly lighthearted. The perils the group encounter pose enough danger to build suspense yet leave room for escape. There's seldom doubt that the kids will prevail, considering their Holmesian knack for observation; the book's pleasure rests in their citywide ranging that peels back history to reveal the secrets of a legendary pirate embedded in their midst.


A list of fun facts lists the book's film influences, which include Pirates of the Caribbean, and a section of hints offers insights written in reverse. With the exuberance of a caper, determined protagonists, and a message steeped in family legacy, this first in a planned series is a splendid homage to adventure.


Reviewed by Karen Rigby

May/June 2018


Disclosure: This article is not an endorsement, but a review. The author of this book provided free copies of the book to have their book reviewed by a professional reviewer. No fee was paid by the author for this review. Foreword Reviews only recommends books that we love. Foreword Magazine, Inc. is disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255.

From the Author

A lot of love and attention to detail went into creating Legend. Did you
spot an email address in one of the illustrations? Try sending a message
and see what happens... but there is more to it than pure entertainment.

A Story for the Heart - A Challenge to the Mind


This is a story about friendship first and foremost. A story for the heart.
And about the drive to explore, to inquire and to second-guess. All three
main characters require perserverance and courage to succeed, and
derive the necessary strength from their friendship.

Gets Kids' Eyes Off Screens

This book is designed to also engage today's young video gamers and
water their taste for books. One of the main reasons for the appeal of
video games is a frequent feeling of accomplishment. This book is
designed to achieve the same. The 31 concise chapters, each ending with
a puzzle to be solved, provide an equally rewarding experience. The
high-quality visuals are another reason video gaming kids will feel right
at home.

Will Girls Like the Book too?

My wife and I are proud parents of our super-cute (no bias here)
daugther Emmelie. It was important to me to create a character with
Lilli, who is ready to take the lead and make things happen. Who doesn't
care about what society expects but about fulfilling her own dreams and
ambitions.

So yes, I created this story with girls in mind. Hopefully, my daughter
(and you too) will love it the way I do.

Have fun!

Product details

Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5
483 customer ratings
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Top international reviews

maria matthews
5.0 out of 5 stars A teasing treasure hunt guaranteed to please any child
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 16, 2018
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Mr Mark G Eaton
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 16, 2020
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Tiffany Rix
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent must have!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 11, 2020
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