Navigating Early

By Clare Vanderpool

Dec 18, 2012 | Reviewed by TFK Kid Reporter Bridget Bernardo

Genre: Historical fiction

Number of pages: 320

What’s the basic story line?

At the end of World War II, 13-year-old Jack Baker’s mother dies, and he is sent from his home in Kansas to a boarding school in Maine. At school, he meets a strange boy named Early Auden, who is determined to prove that the number pi is part of a never-ending story. Early tells Jack that pi is on a journey and is in danger. Jack joins Early on his quest for pi, and they encounter pirates, timber rattlesnakes, the Great Appalachian Bear and The Fish, a school hero who never returned from the war. During the adventure, Jack’s strength, courage, character and patience are tested.

Are the characters believable? Explain.

Yes, the characters are realistic for the time period. Jack is your typical everyday boy from 1946. He just lost his mother, and readers can relate to his feelings of loss. Jack also has a good sense of humor. Early is strange, but the author does a great job making his personality seem believable. Readers will feel like they know the characters.

On a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being best), how would you rate this book? Explain.

I would rate this book an 8. It is a well-written and interesting book. I enjoyed its mystery and suspense features. If you like mystery books or historical fiction, you will probably enjoy this book.