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Paperback The Name of This Book Is Secret Book

ISBN: 0316113697

ISBN13: 9780316113694

The Name of This Book Is Secret

(Book #1 in the Secret Series)

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Format: Paperback

Condition: Very Good

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Book Overview

Read the series that's sold more than 2 million copies--if you dare

Warning: this description has not been authorized by Pseudonymous Bosch. As much as he'd love to sing the praises of his book (he is very vain), he wouldn't want you to hear about his brave 11-year old heroes, Cass and Max-Ernest. Or about how a mysterious box of vials, the Symphony of Smells, sends them on the trail of a magician who has vanished under...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

A disappointing ending, but presumably a sequel en route

In his debut novel "Pseudonymous Bosch" tells a story wrapped in an enigma: not only is the name of the book a secret, as its very name asserts, but so are the names of his characters and other identifiers such as their location and hair color. But because he's got a story to tell and has to call them something, Bosch gives his characters pseudonyms. "Cassandra," or Cass, is an 11-year-old survivalist. She carries a backpack filled with supplies with her at all times and tends to imagine disasters around every corner. Because these never materialize, the people around her mostly dismiss her concerns--hence her similarity to her namesake, the Greek Cassandra, who was given the power of prophecy with the catch that no one would believe her. Cass's classmate "Max-Ernest"--whose dual name reflects his parents' divided opinions and lifestyle--is unusually talkative and has some kind of condition that has yet to be identified. Cass and Max-Ernest bond because they're both more accepting than most of one another's peculiarities. And soon they fall into a mystery. A secret message from a magician, presumed dead, leads them into peril--specifically, the evil, glove-wearing clutches of a pair of too-perfect-looking malefactors, the enigmatic Dr. L. And Ms. Mauvais. To an extent Bosch's book is reminiscent of Lemony Snicket's Series of Unfortunate Events. Here too a pseudonymous author is telling the story of his young protagonists' brush with evil. He suggests readers not read the book. There is a secret organization of do-gooders involved, and the plot is even punctuated by suspicious fires. The narrator alludes to dangers he himself is facing, and he interrupts the narrative with amusing comments addressed to the reader. But Bosch is not as linguistically playful as Snicket, and a larger percentage of his text is pure story, I'd say, than one gets in the Snicket corpus. I liked most of this book a lot. The protagonists are likable, not improbably smart but clever enough. The mystery held my interest. And the villains are deliciously creepy without wearing their evil on their sleeves. I was disappointed, however, in the ending, an important detail of which, involving a coded communication, seemed implausible. The ending also, frustratingly, left a lot unanswered, presumably in preparation for a sequel, though there is no indication on the book's jacket that this is the first in a series. -- Debra Hamel

Entertaining read

Reviewed by Maya Landers (age 9) for Reader Views (12/07) "The Name of this Book is Secret," by Pseudonymous Bosch, is funny and quick-witted. This book is written in a style that I have never seen before. In making it seem as though you should not read the book, you are made even more interested, and so you keep reading. Although it seems kind of obvious that Bosch is trying to get you to read the book, after the first few pages it seems more like any other book. For example, on the first page, in bold letters, you are warned: "DO NOT READ BEYOND THIS PAGE!" The book begins by saying: "Good. Now I know I can trust you. You're curious. You're brave. And you're not afraid to lead a life of crime." The author, the supposed "Pseudonymous Bosch," has written about a great secret, and no one can know any details. Indeed, the first chapter is nothing but XXX's (Literally! Here's a quote: "XXXX, XXXX XXXX, XXXXXXXX!!!"). Apparently, that chapter would tell the reader the names, ages and whereabouts of the main characters, Cass and Max-Ernest. Instead of setting Cass and Max-Ernest down in their actual town, or even letting the characters keep their own names, Bosch advises the reader to think of their town as "Your Hometown," to think of the school as "Your School," and, if you did not like the names given to the characters, to simply change them to any names you like. However, as the story progresses, the town begins to develop a definite outline and you learn more about the characters. For instance, Cass is a survivalist who will never go anywhere without her backpack, and Max-Ernest loves to tell jokes which, unfortunately, no one appreciates. Also, you find out why Max-Ernest must be called Max-Ernest, and the hilarious escapades which attach themselves to that rather odd name. Bosch writes a brief description of each of the characters and their backgrounds "not enough for you to know anything important, such as their real names or ages, mind you, just enough so that you can get an idea of who they are." Although most of the time the book is funny and exciting, there are other times where interesting points are added not just for humor's sake. An example of this would be: "Cass put the book in her backpack, mulling over what she had read. Why did so many grown-ups want to be young, she wondered, when it took so long to become old? It was like going on a million mile road trip then wanting to turn around without getting out of the car." Even the chapter names are different and funny; chapter thirteen was crossed out to be replaced with fourteen, and at the bottom of the page there was a footnote saying "Of course, I don't really believe that the number 13 is bad luck, but under the circumstances, why not play it safe?" The entire book is filled with these funny little side notes, greatly adding to the content of the story. I would recommend this book to my friends because the settings are unique (despite the author's obvious attempts to k

This is an AMAZING book!

My son begged me to buy this book. I thought it was too long for a 6 year old but he has devoured the book - reading non-stop for 3 days. He loves the dry humor and the way the author keeps stopping the story to make comments. I hope this author writes many more books. There is even a great website to check out at

WOW! Bosch is Brilliant!

This is truly a great book! It is a wondrous read that I couldn't put down and I didn't want to end. This engaging book pulled me in on the first page and I couldn't let go. It is an amusing, intriguing and well thought out mystery, but it is also an inspiring and magical story. It's like a comedy-action-adventure-mystery with magic. It was pure joy to read and easily the best book I have read this year. I have already begun reading it again. Once you enter the world of Cass and Max-Ernest you will never want to leave. It is a kid's book but like Harry Potter before it, everyone can get wrapped up in the world Bosch creates. I really loved this book and recommend it to anyone who likes to read. This book is a MUST!!!

A joy to read

This is destined to be a classic of children's literature. From the first page this book inspires a feeling of wonder and joy, in both children and adults. It is a book for anyone who loves to read. The pleasure is not just in the well-crafted mystery, but in the exuberant way it is told. Fun, funny, original, stylish, unique, just delightful.
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