Saturday, April 2, 2016

Salt Mines Mystery by Aaron Zook

Twelve year-old Gabe Zanadu, his brother, Alex, and dogs Thunder and Lightning face Team Test #2 in Germany’s Berchtesgaden Salt Mines. Fighting a human-trafficking ring, they must successfully negotiate the Egyptian Path of Death to free themselves, the victims and bring their captors to justice. THE SALT MINES MYSTERY Threatened in the streets of Goeppingen, Germany, Gabe and Alex Zanadu make a disastrous decision that plummets them, their dogs Thunder and Lightning, and international friends into the clutches of an evil human trafficking ring.

Who sent thugs to attack twelve-year-old Gabe in an alley?
What secret does Gabe and Alex, his fourteen-year-old brother, learn at the War Council?
Can the boys remember the sailor song clues given by the mysterious ‘G’ and survive?

How do Thunder and Lightning keep their masters alive?
Will Gabe and Alex’s brotherly ties withstand the onslaught of danger?
Who will finish the race through the Egyptian Path of Death?

Find the answers to these questions and more in this heart-pumping, action-packed adventure/mystery story. And the Thunder and Lightning saga is just beginning!

You can get your copy on Amazon or Deeper Shopping. 
Aaron M. Zook, Jr., a retired U.S. Army Colonel, enjoys writing Christian books. The Secrets of the Castle, his intriguing middle-reader mystery/adventure novel for boys and the first of the Thunder and Lightning series is available at and other online stores, and is currently on sale for half-price at on sale at Aaron lives with his wife in Belton, TX. They have two married sons.

My Take:
After reading book one and enjoying it, I decided to try book two. My son also read book one and was looking forward to reading the second in the series. We home-school, so that is fun common ground with the boys in the series, and my kids once had dogs named Thunder and Lightning. 

This book continues the family's military time in Germany, and they end up at the Salt Mines on a field trip/ family getaway.  Somehow, all their friends end up there too, which makes the story all the more exciting. What kid doesn't want to travel with his peers? Alex and Gabe have alot of sibling rivalry going on, and are always pushing the boundaries to the limit and getting in trouble, especially Gabe.

It took me a little while to get the hang of who's who, and everyone's name and relationship straight with the friends, but that was just a minor hangup for me. Their adventures begin almost immediately and they go from risky, to perilous to flat out dangerous in a matter of just a few hours. The menacing people after them, and the high-risk things they have to do to get out of the mess they are in is almost unbelievable. But for boys, I am sure it is exciting and unpredictable. There are some pretty freaky moments, injuries, and I would say this book is not for the faint of heart, or the squeamish. . I know there were several times, my son was on the edge just wondering what was going to happen next! And how in the world they would get out of that particular predicament alive.

I think these are great adventure books for tween boys. They include mystery, suspense, adventure but also loyalty to family and friends and well as life lessons in obedience, faith, and trusting God. Some parts may be a bit frightening, so you should judge based on what you feel your child can handle. I am sure some girls may enjoy these books also, as the boys have friends who are girls in the books.

I was blessed with a copy of this book by the author and in exchange for my honest opinion. I am never required to review positively.  

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