Hot Best Seller

The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Riddle of Ages

Availability: Ready to download

The brilliant and beloved gang from the New York Times bestselling series is back! The Mysterious Benedict Society is a modern classic, drawing comparisons to J.K. Rowling and Roald Dahl, named a Time magazine "Best Young Adult Book of All Time," and selling over three million copies. Some time has passed since the inimitable quartet of Reynie, Sticky, Kate, and Consta The brilliant and beloved gang from the New York Times bestselling series is back! The Mysterious Benedict Society is a modern classic, drawing comparisons to J.K. Rowling and Roald Dahl, named a Time magazine "Best Young Adult Book of All Time," and selling over three million copies. Some time has passed since the inimitable quartet of Reynie, Sticky, Kate, and Constance have had a mission together. But with the arrival of a new Society member -- and a new threat -- they must reunite to face dilemmas more dangerous than ever before, including the villainous Mr. Curtain and a telepathic enemy tracking their every move, not to mention a dramatically preteen Constance. In its triumphant return, the Society encounters all new challenges, but the series' trademark sly humor, sweet camaraderie, hairsbreadth escapes, and mind-bending puzzles are all as engaging as ever. Fans of the series will be thrilled to see the Society has grown up a little with them, while a new generation of readers will fall in love with these irresistible adventures.


Compare

The brilliant and beloved gang from the New York Times bestselling series is back! The Mysterious Benedict Society is a modern classic, drawing comparisons to J.K. Rowling and Roald Dahl, named a Time magazine "Best Young Adult Book of All Time," and selling over three million copies. Some time has passed since the inimitable quartet of Reynie, Sticky, Kate, and Consta The brilliant and beloved gang from the New York Times bestselling series is back! The Mysterious Benedict Society is a modern classic, drawing comparisons to J.K. Rowling and Roald Dahl, named a Time magazine "Best Young Adult Book of All Time," and selling over three million copies. Some time has passed since the inimitable quartet of Reynie, Sticky, Kate, and Constance have had a mission together. But with the arrival of a new Society member -- and a new threat -- they must reunite to face dilemmas more dangerous than ever before, including the villainous Mr. Curtain and a telepathic enemy tracking their every move, not to mention a dramatically preteen Constance. In its triumphant return, the Society encounters all new challenges, but the series' trademark sly humor, sweet camaraderie, hairsbreadth escapes, and mind-bending puzzles are all as engaging as ever. Fans of the series will be thrilled to see the Society has grown up a little with them, while a new generation of readers will fall in love with these irresistible adventures.

30 review for The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Riddle of Ages

  1. 5 out of 5

    Lindsey (Books for Christian Girls)

    Did I just finish the book—the book I’ve waited seven years for—in less than five hours? Oops. Let’s first talk about my overall excitement, eagerness, and also nervousness about this fourth book. I first read this series when I was about ten and loved it. Book #1 will always have a special place in my heart that is shown through my fangirling and owning approximately half a dozen copies of the first book. That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy the second and third book—I definitely did—but it’s the fi Did I just finish the book—the book I’ve waited seven years for—in less than five hours? Oops. Let’s first talk about my overall excitement, eagerness, and also nervousness about this fourth book. I first read this series when I was about ten and loved it. Book #1 will always have a special place in my heart that is shown through my fangirling and owning approximately half a dozen copies of the first book. That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy the second and third book—I definitely did—but it’s the first book and Mr. Benedict’s story that I cannot read fast enough. In preparation of this fourth book, I decided to reread this classic series and I’d like to say that even at ten years later, I truly do love this series. Because of my great fondness, I was definitely nervous about this fourth book: What if it didn’t feel right? What if I was disappointed? Would it be weird to see the characters a bit older? I think these fears were valid and I did read this newest addition on pins and needles. However, I’m quite glad to say that I did really enjoy this novel. It was just as clean as the previous books and had all the same suspense and action fellow fans of the series will notice. There are a few new faces in “The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Riddle of Ages” and while I do personally think the ending was a little rushed, I really enjoyed it and it was oh-so-special to see the much loved characters. It was fascinating to see Renyie, Kate, and Sticky all around my current age now and dealing with their emotions towards their friends and what is next in their lives. The best way I can think to end this happy review is to say how absolutely lovely it was to see The Mysterious Benedict Society again and though it wasn’t my favorite in the series, it was just so good to see them all again. Original review: I literally cannot contain my excitement for this book! Elementary school Lindsey is thriving! :D

  2. 4 out of 5

    Els

    It was interesting? Admittedly, I wasn't in the perfect MBS mood, but it was charming as always (and it's grand to be back!) I laughed so many times, and this one managed to hit on growing up - the same terrors I'm going through - in all the right places. This, and everything Trenton Lee Stewart, will always be a favorite, but somehow this one didn't quite make it to the top. Maybe it's the fact that Kate doesn't carry her bucket anymore, or that I found the riddles boring (I'm not saying they'r It was interesting? Admittedly, I wasn't in the perfect MBS mood, but it was charming as always (and it's grand to be back!) I laughed so many times, and this one managed to hit on growing up - the same terrors I'm going through - in all the right places. This, and everything Trenton Lee Stewart, will always be a favorite, but somehow this one didn't quite make it to the top. Maybe it's the fact that Kate doesn't carry her bucket anymore, or that I found the riddles boring (I'm not saying they're easy, (in fact I only solved one) but they're dull.) ANYWAY. I'll binge the whole series sometime when I'm in a true MBS mood, and I'll probably love it twice as much. Unfortunately, my MBS, along with my The Extraordinary Education of Nicholas Benedict, which I desperately want to reread now) are packed deep in moving boxes. Phooey on moving & also my own methods of getting through my TBR.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Aria

    AHHH FINALLY AT LONG LAST! It definitely lived up to my expectations, although, I think the other ones were a bit better. :)

  4. 4 out of 5

    Kate Willis

    When I finished the original trilogy just six months ago, I had my doubts about reading this one. Why read another book when that ending was sooooo satisfactory? Well, here I am, and I’m very happy to have read it. :D (I got to buddy read this book with my friend Mikayla. 10/10 would recommend.) When it first started out, I’ll admit that it didn’t feel like I was expecting. The first chapter was more action-packed and explanation-packed than these books usually start out with--which I’m sure was a When I finished the original trilogy just six months ago, I had my doubts about reading this one. Why read another book when that ending was sooooo satisfactory? Well, here I am, and I’m very happy to have read it. :D (I got to buddy read this book with my friend Mikayla. 10/10 would recommend.) When it first started out, I’ll admit that it didn’t feel like I was expecting. The first chapter was more action-packed and explanation-packed than these books usually start out with--which I’m sure was a welcome opening for readers new to the series or in need of a refresher. ;) Fortunately, it settled into the happy rhythm of cleverness, heartwarming friendship, and profound thoughts mixed together into an adventure like I’ve grown to love. The blessed wordplays are back and better than ever! And so many callbacks to the first book. <3 Also, Milligan will never cease to be a legend. XD I love the old gang so much, and I loved seeing them be themselves and even more so. Kate was… WOW. The moment with the stairs, anyone? Sticky is darling, and the more I think about it, I relate to him a little more than I ever have before. And Constance!!! The green-plaid-suit-wearing teenager with scarlet hair (maybe a bit like her sister’s <3 ). She was sleepy and grumpy again in this one, yes, but her struggles with feeling left out (as the only one officially still a young kid), her beautiful if grumpy love for her friends and family, and some of the gobsmacking things she did = happy sigh. Also, while I recognize that she shouldn’t be rude, I also recognize that certain things are always going to be harder for her, but after that ending I’ve got some hope. ;) Also, Tai is my baby. <3 I liked his role in the story, and yes, of course I saw a metaphorical meaning for it. XD And Reynie. He’s always been my favorite character, and I love his big, beautiful heart. The painful growth he had to go through in this one was a little hard to read about at times, but I loved it in the end. He’s so awesome. <3 Honestly, all the ponderings about growing up and growing apart and respecting each other were amazing. My friend Mikayla and I agreed that it meant a lot to us since we were a similar age to the characters for the first time. (And those topics have been on my mind a ton lately.) I loved the adventure in this one, and while I had a *tiny* guess of what was going on, the full scope of it just blew. my. mind. O.o. I love it so much. I did find some of the logistics confusing at times and the ending was a little slow, but I didn’t mind those so much. ;) Everything else was so perfect. <3 (And Reynie daring Kate to keep her hairstyle in was The Most Adorable Thing Ever.) Just a note, there were a couple instances of threats against children and some peril. Also, as it says on the tin, telepathy is a factor. Best quotes: “Poetic license,” Constance said with a shrug. Tai was fascinated. “There’s a license for poetry?” More than once he’d come close to knocking on Mr. Benedict’s study door, only to change his mind and creep away. Now it occurred to him that Mr. Benedict had been aware of those almost-knocks. In fact, Mr. Benedict’s decision to “have an extra cup of tea” had likely been meant to make it easier for Reynie to approach him. No need for knocking. Mr. Benedict had removed the door. Altogether, this was a great read, and with the nods to the prequel, I’m thinking I’ll need to read that one too. ;)

  5. 4 out of 5

    Aiden Heavilin

    **Spoilers ahead** Wow, this hurts. The first "Mysterious Benedict Society" novel is so good its almost unfair to other books. There are many things you can enjoy as a child that then fade as you grow older, that first novel is not one of them. It remains a beautifully plotted and paced story; I love the atmospheric dystopia, citizens of an anonymous city trapped in a vaguely defined political "Emergency", a mysterious academy on Nomansan Island, an exiled genius recruiting a team of children to i **Spoilers ahead** Wow, this hurts. The first "Mysterious Benedict Society" novel is so good its almost unfair to other books. There are many things you can enjoy as a child that then fade as you grow older, that first novel is not one of them. It remains a beautifully plotted and paced story; I love the atmospheric dystopia, citizens of an anonymous city trapped in a vaguely defined political "Emergency", a mysterious academy on Nomansan Island, an exiled genius recruiting a team of children to infiltrate the heart of darkness that is "The Learning Institute for the Very Enlightened." I love the nightmare nursery-rhyme classes and the horrific secrets of the academy, "The Waiting Room" of sludge and insects, the Drapeweed Traps if you stray too far off the path. There is a demented fairy-tale madness to the first novel; Jackson and Jillson, rhymes and riddles... and this old-time atmosphere is married to a steampunk aesthetic and a truly heartwarming story of adventure and friendship. "The Mysterious Benedict Society" is like a perfect brew of Roald Dahl and Franz Kafka, a gripping, engaging, moving story which evokes, chapter to chapter, nearly every emotion one could ask from a book. It is an adventure in its purest form, and I treasure its sheer creativity. Creativity is something that would diminish, slightly, during the following two installments, although they had their moments. I loved the European Treasure Hunt of "Perilous Journey", the terrifying fight in the abandoned town, the mysterious "Duskwort Papers"... It didn't have the magic of the first novel, but it was an admirable sequel. "Prisoner's Dillema" again represented a slight drop-off in quality, but it was still leagues ahead of its competition. And then the prequel "The Extraordinary Education of Nicholas Benedict" somehow even surpassed the first novel in the series. "Extraordinary Education" is, in my mind, a perfect novel, the final third of which is almost emotionally overwhelming. It's more than just a children's book, it's a masterpiece. All of this, not to mention the fact that Trenton Lee Stewart's first novel "Flood Summer", (an adult novel with nothing to do with the Mysterious Benedict Society) is.... uh.... my favorite book of all time, might have raised my expectations too high for "The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Riddle of Ages." But... man, I did not expect it to be this bad. Going into the novel, I was looking forwards to the riddles and escapades and adventures, the twisty plot and the comraderie between the team. I was looking forwards to every chapter introducing some new and clever twist or idea. But it seems Stewart's creativity and passion for the series has run out, which I can hardly blame him for. Two exemplary novels and two very good ones is a good enough track record to cement the Benedict books as one of the best children's series of all time... but still. Wow. Almost nothing happens in "Riddle of Ages". And a slow pace has always been a feature of Stewart's novels, the lengthy testing scenes at the beginning of the first novel, the opening scenes in the house of "Prisoner's Dillema." Yet in those previous novels, there is always a strong undercurrent of suspense and anxiety pressing the plot forwards even through pages of quiet conversations. During the first 200 pages of "Riddle of Ages", almost nothing happens. Only one character even *leaves the house* for the first half of the novel. Pacing is one of the main problems. The previous novels spaced the story out over weeks, even months of action, allowing for a real sense of scale and time. The events of "Riddle of Ages" occur within exactly two days, which comes out to about *200 pages a day*. This leads to the story seeming both rushed and dragged out. Almost nothing happens, but it takes forever when it does happen. The actual story itself is immensely disappointing. A group of Ten Men are attempting to break Mr. Curtain out of prison. Okay, that would be a good first few chapters maybe to set off a new story, but that's the *whole plot*. The entire book occurs in two locations, Mr. Benedict's house and the prison on Nomansan Island. For the first 200 or so pages, the society sits around talking, explaining, and summarizing days and days of backstory that could have been *shown* rather than told. It annoys me to no end when the exposition that characters explain during team meeting scenes would have made a better story than the *actual plot of the book*. After this interminable opening half, the society go to the prison on Nomansan Island to stop the Ten Men and save Mr. Benedict. Nearly every scene during this half of the book consists of technobabble and standing around in dark hallways. Gone are the inventive locales of "Prisoner's Dillema", the secret passages of the original novel, the gothic mansion of secrets in "Extraordinary Education." This entire book except for one or two scenes takes place indoors in hallways. This book feels like a low budget movie that couldn't afford to shoot on interesting sets. I remember a hilariously awful description of two Ten Men avoiding Milligan's tranquilizer darts by moving left and right as if in a "lethal dance". This is described as something going on in the background as Kate attends to a different task. Also, this is probably the best scene in the book, which might tell you something about the quality of the surrounding scenes. This book possesses no magic, very little creativity, and an extreme reliance on nostalgia to evoke emotion. The only true emotions I felt during this book came with a few cameos of characters from "Extraordinary Education." In other words, the best parts of this book were when it was reminding me of other, better books. I'm honestly shocked by just how poorly written, uneventful and *boring* this book is. Trenton Lee Stewart has honestly never let me down before. Even his novel "The Secret Keepers", although deeply flawed, was a fun and unique story. Stewart is truly one of my favorite writers. Like I mentioned earlier, his novel "Flood Summer" is my *favorite book ever written by anyone ever* Maybe this book was a contractual obligation, or maybe it was just written to pay the bills. I don't know. "Riddle of Ages" does not make me think less of the previous novels, nor does it make me think less of Stewart as a writer; not even a little bit. This is a misstep, to be sure, but, man, the first Mysterious Benedict Society book really is just *that good*. So is "Riddle of Ages" an example of wasted potential. Honestly, I don't think so. "Prisoner's Dillema" was imperfect, but the ending was honestly excellent, leaving just a perfect amount of ambiguity and wrapping up the most important threads. There was no point to continue the story, the story was over. And it's weird to me that all this novel does is undo the"Prisoner's Dillema" ending and then quickly return it to the same state of equilibrium again. Maybe here's a better way of stating that. In "Riddle of Ages", all four of the society's members are looking at different, personal paths. Reynie has been accepted to dozens of top universities, Sticky has been offered the opportunity to head up one of the top science labs in the country, Kate is becoming a secret agent for her father's agency, etc. Each are afraid to pursue these routes though, because they know it would mean the end of the Society. The arc this seems to be setting up is an acceptance that people change with time and that you can't keep holding on to the fun things of the past. I was looking forwards to a scene of Reynie heading to Harvard, Sticky entering the laboratory on his first day, etc. This would have been an emotionally powerful way to end the story. But at the end of "Riddle of Ages", the society ends up agreeing to *delay or even cancel entirely* these personal paths, and to stay together at "home", which seems like not only a tepid, pathetic conclusion to what could have been an emotionally powerful, meaningful story arc, but also a metaphor for the novel at large. This book is a refusal to move forwards and move beyond, a story that relies entirely on nostalgia and faded laurels to court reader goodwill. In short, it's a story that like the characters at the end, refuses to grow up.

  6. 4 out of 5

    raffaela

    This is perhaps my most anticipated book of the year (although, that's partly due to the fact that most of the authors I read are, well, not churning out any more works anymore). The Mysterious Benedict Society is one of my favorite children's series ever, and right after I had finished re-reading it I found out about this book. Ever since I've been eagerly awaiting it, but I was also slightly nervous that it wouldn't be as good or even that it would ruin the series for me, based on experiences This is perhaps my most anticipated book of the year (although, that's partly due to the fact that most of the authors I read are, well, not churning out any more works anymore). The Mysterious Benedict Society is one of my favorite children's series ever, and right after I had finished re-reading it I found out about this book. Ever since I've been eagerly awaiting it, but I was also slightly nervous that it wouldn't be as good or even that it would ruin the series for me, based on experiences with... well, with other series. My fears were unfounded. This book is just as good as the second and third books (not quite as good as the first, but only because it would be nigh impossible to beat that), and it is a beautiful continuation of the series while still being its own unique book. The characters are older, yet still themselves - and the themes of growing up and accepting the change that comes with that while still holding on to the memories and the friends of the past really resonated with me. It's classic Stewart, in other words. I'm sure that I will love it even more reading it for the second time. I'm so grateful for this series, and I'm glad Stewart came back for more. ----------------------------------------- Original Review (pre-release): Release Date: SEPTEMBER 24, 2019. Amazon synopsis: "Since The Mysterious Benedict Society debuted twelve years ago, the series has become a modern classic, drawing comparisons to J.K. Rowling and Roald Dahl and selling over three million copies. Some time has passed since the inimitable quartet of Reynie, Sticky, Kate, and Constance have had a mission together. But with the arrival of a new Society member -- and a new threat -- they must reunite to face dilemmas more dangerous than ever before, including the villainous Mr. Curtain and a telepathic enemy tracking their every move, not to mention a dramatically preteen Constance. In its triumphant return, the Society encounters all new challenges, but the series' trademark sly humor, sweet camaraderie, hairsbreadth escapes, and mind-bending puzzles are all as engaging as ever. Fans of the series will be thrilled to see the Society has grown up a little with them, while a new generation of readers will fall in love with these irresistible adventures." *screams*

  7. 4 out of 5

    Joey T

    WHAAAAAAT?!?! This book- just AGH It’s a bit bitersweet knowing that the series is now over (or as far as I know) which makes me sad. It’s always hard seeing characters you’ve grown attached to grow up and mature. This was my favorite book in the series and probably my favorite book of 2019 which is quite an accomplishment- I’m impressed. Amazing y’all need to read this series if ya haven’t

  8. 5 out of 5

    Mary

    Wow. That had to be one of the most unique books in this series. The originality of this series was one of the things that initially drew me in, but the characters kept my interest. I love them all, but Kate stole my heart. She is daring and adventurous, but one of the kindest and caring ones as well. She's not abrasive, she skydives, ground-dives, is extremely fast, can pick locks, and is fun to be around. Life is never boring with her. Another aspect of this book that made it irresistible is t Wow. That had to be one of the most unique books in this series. The originality of this series was one of the things that initially drew me in, but the characters kept my interest. I love them all, but Kate stole my heart. She is daring and adventurous, but one of the kindest and caring ones as well. She's not abrasive, she skydives, ground-dives, is extremely fast, can pick locks, and is fun to be around. Life is never boring with her. Another aspect of this book that made it irresistible is the team itself. Rennie, Kate, Sticky, and Constance look out for each other and truly care about each other's well being. Their conflicts weren't immature squabbles, but reflected deep issues they had. I mean, let's face it; they've got evil masterminds against them, who needs drama? It only scares the poor reader (ahem, me) to see their miscommunications. And if love triangles will factor into this series anywhere, I might just have a coronary because I love this band of characters and I'm not not letting anything break them apart. Unfortunately (but fortunately) I'm not in charge. That's inevitable when a cast of characters grow up. They go their own ways, and I can start to see that happening already.

  9. 5 out of 5

    anya

    The ghost of my former elementary school self and my current self are both screaming in perfect synchronicity right now I NEED THIS BOOK

  10. 4 out of 5

    Megan {A Barefoot Gal}

    HOORAY. I'm still a tad confused, and confused if I am confused or not... but that probably has something to do with the fact that I read it in about five hours. AHH I LOVE THIS SERIES. I was actually really happy that I got to see the characters grown up! It was interesting how you didn't know what some of what the characters already knew (at least I didn't, again that could be because I missed something?) because I hadn't seen that as much in the other books, but it turned out great! I LOVED I HOORAY. I'm still a tad confused, and confused if I am confused or not... but that probably has something to do with the fact that I read it in about five hours. AHH I LOVE THIS SERIES. I was actually really happy that I got to see the characters grown up! It was interesting how you didn't know what some of what the characters already knew (at least I didn't, again that could be because I missed something?) because I hadn't seen that as much in the other books, but it turned out great! I LOVED IT. I wasn't a huge fan of the new member, but it didn't bother me a ton.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Haven

    I. AM. SO. PUMPED. FOR. THIS. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Middle school Haven is extremely happy right now... I WAS NOT EXPECTING THIS this made my day!!!!!! ACK!!!

  12. 4 out of 5

    Mikayla

    I'm not sure quite where to start with this book. I was so excited to read a continuation of this series. 1. The characters have grown SO much. I loved seeing them all older. Renyie and Sticky especially were fun to see. Tai was adorable, and I loved seeing how everyone took care of him. Kate was just about the best. I really related to a lot of the problems they were dealing with. It really hurt to see them all hurting alone and not mentioning it to each other. 2. The plot. While I am not a fan I'm not sure quite where to start with this book. I was so excited to read a continuation of this series. 1. The characters have grown SO much. I loved seeing them all older. Renyie and Sticky especially were fun to see. Tai was adorable, and I loved seeing how everyone took care of him. Kate was just about the best. I really related to a lot of the problems they were dealing with. It really hurt to see them all hurting alone and not mentioning it to each other. 2. The plot. While I am not a fan of telepaths, this book had one of my favorite plots. It wasn't so focused on the bad guys, but more about the Society working together. Though the puzzles were not quite as big a part of this book, it was still fun to see them pop up. I did feel like the ending was a bit rushed. I did get pretty confused with all the stuff about the doors, and alarms in the institute, which wasn't necessary to get, but it was a bit frustrating not to be able to sort out. 3. The character's climax. Oh my goodness. That chapter where all the characters have their arc was truly amazing. O.o 4. The ending. I was very satisfied by the ending of this book, which I was afraid I would not be since the last one had left everything in such a good spot. This ending was just about perfect. So, the only things I ended up not really loving was all the telepathy, and how rude Constance was through a lot of the book. I understand it's part of her character, but it was still frustrating. Overall, great book. I am so grateful I got the chance to buddy read this with my awesome friend Kate. =) We were supposed to read it in two weeks and ended up reading it in six days. XD

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ejayen

    Tai! Tai! Tai! I read this book ina about four hours, but as I started it late last night I did read it over two days.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Mikayla

    Honestly, I don't even know how to write a review for this. I loved it. It was a very bittersweet book to read. I loved seeing them all together again, even though I started reading the series so recently I really hadn't waited long to read this one. This book was amazing. It had points where I just wanted to hug the characters. It also had points I just wanted to yell at them (But don't all good books?). But the characters were realistic and had struggles I could relate to. I loved the theme ab Honestly, I don't even know how to write a review for this. I loved it. It was a very bittersweet book to read. I loved seeing them all together again, even though I started reading the series so recently I really hadn't waited long to read this one. This book was amazing. It had points where I just wanted to hug the characters. It also had points I just wanted to yell at them (But don't all good books?). But the characters were realistic and had struggles I could relate to. I loved the theme about growing up. <3 This goes on the record as my favorite buddy with Kate ever. <3

  15. 4 out of 5

    Awallens

    It looks like I am in the minority here, but I was really disappointed in this installment in the series. I felt very disconnected from the characters, they seemed very cardboard and it just didn't fall together very well, the story I mean. It was just like the author wrote this in order to finish the series. If this is the end of the series it's very disappointing.

  16. 4 out of 5

    f l i k o t i n a

    I liked this one a lot but I found it a little confusing.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Constance

    I'M GONNA CRY THERE'S A FOURTH BOOK???!!!! The Mysterious Benedict Society has always been one of my favorites, I literally cannot wait

  18. 5 out of 5

    Iris

    WHY DID I NOT KNOW THIS WAS A THING HELLO THESE BOOKS WERE MY CHILDHOOD OMFG I'M SCARED

  19. 4 out of 5

    christine ✩

    my life is complete y’all

  20. 4 out of 5

    Leah Waters

    It was so much fun returning to the Mysterious Benedict Society, and really fascinating seeing them all grown up. The riddles and puzzles are fantastic, and the twist at the end blew my mind. I love the Society so much.

  21. 4 out of 5

    via

    plot wise, this was by far the weakest in my opinion (though whether that's due to my not being 9 or its actual weakness, who knows) but the narratives of adolescence and friendship still Got me. this was def my least favorite of the series , but it's still a solid conclusion and i loved finding the Society again.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Ben Howard

    HOW DID I NOT KNOW THERE WAS GOING TO BE A FOURTH ONE?!?! need to re-read the series and then pick this up asap HOW DID I NOT KNOW THERE WAS GOING TO BE A FOURTH ONE?!?! need to re-read the series and then pick this up asap

  23. 4 out of 5

    Ellie Garrett

    The Mysterious Benedict Society has been one of my favorite series for a couple of years now, and I've always loved the characters, the plot, and the detailed yet interesting writing. To me, this installment had none of those qualities. This is by far the longest I've taken to read one of these books, and I found myself incredibly bored or confused throughout most of the story. We were thrown into a plot (if you can even call it a plot?) that was supposed to reveal itself as it went, but instead The Mysterious Benedict Society has been one of my favorite series for a couple of years now, and I've always loved the characters, the plot, and the detailed yet interesting writing. To me, this installment had none of those qualities. This is by far the longest I've taken to read one of these books, and I found myself incredibly bored or confused throughout most of the story. We were thrown into a plot (if you can even call it a plot?) that was supposed to reveal itself as it went, but instead left me feeling like the author simply didn't know where he was going with anything until a 'reveal' that didn't make much sense. For example, the KEEP being a 'trap for Ten Men' didn't actually acheive anything. They were still trapped and still in danger, so what was the point? Also, the conflict resolution at the end felt way too fast compared to the pacing of the rest of the books - which was another major issue for me. I find that I could sum up the book in a few short sentences, because nothing important even happened. I'm sure other people will disagree with me, but I hated Tai Li. He was useless, he got in the way often, and his dialogue pulled the other characters down. It seemed like half of the book was spent trying to keep Tai or Constance from knowing what was actually going on, which effectively kept the reader from knowing what was going on. While this might sound like a clever plot device, like I said, the reveals were pointless. Back to another plot issue - I could have predicted the whole thing before reading it. Seriously - more Ten Men and Mr. Curtain? I understand that that's the book's appeal for some people, but I just found myself thinking - we're doing this AGAIN!? The only things that kept me from giving this book a one-star is Constance, who is as always my favorite due to her witty humor and sulky attitude, and Kate's mad dash to the button I will admit made me smile. Overall, I really wanted to like this book. It had so much potential for a REAL new Society member and a new plot. However, after reading it, I have to say that this book completely fell flat.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    Thoroughly enjoyed the first three books, but not this one. Can't explain why I disliked it without spoilers. Suffice it to say, the book adds nothing to the storyline. I feel like I wasted 11ish hours.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Sadie Joy

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I didn't go into this book with any expectations, so I wasn't disappointed. I was excited to see Reynie, Kate, Sticky, and Constance again(I promise, Constance, I didn't put you last on purpose), and the addition of Tai was interesting and cute, if a little annoying at times. People tapped their noses far too often, but that isn't really a complaint- it made me laugh. The only thing that intimidated me about this book before I read it was the time that had passed. But after I read it, I felt lik I didn't go into this book with any expectations, so I wasn't disappointed. I was excited to see Reynie, Kate, Sticky, and Constance again(I promise, Constance, I didn't put you last on purpose), and the addition of Tai was interesting and cute, if a little annoying at times. People tapped their noses far too often, but that isn't really a complaint- it made me laugh. The only thing that intimidated me about this book before I read it was the time that had passed. But after I read it, I felt like the "older" Society was well developed, even if it was a bit jarring to think of Constance as anything but 2 years old. But it didn’t ruin my previous image of the Society, which made me happy. So, I have a few quick things that I really loved in this book. Kate Weatherall Kate is a one of a kind heroine; the author should have kudos for writing her. I love that she can be confident and amazing and strong, but can still maintain a femininity that's all her own. She's a heroine I can actually look up to. She doesn't want to be masculine, even if she does "masculine like things" and she doesn't want to be anybody but herself. Mr. Benedict! There’s not very much I can say here, but I wish he was real, because he is about the nicest person I’ve ever met in a book series. I really want to get a green plaid suit. Constance I love that Constance was ALMOST considerate in this book(not really) you can tell she's grown up a bit, but you can also tell that she’s still over the top grumpy, which I like. I can't imagine a non-grumpy Constance. But the near-the-end scene(without spoiling it) made me really happy, because it shed a new light on Constance that we rarely see in the previous books. So, to close. Yes. There were things in this book that I didn’t really like, but I didn’t read this book because I wanted to tear it apart. I read it to enjoy it. And because I did enjoy it, I don’t feel like the things that “I didn’t really like” are important enough to write down. I’m just so happy we got a book four! It was so good to see these characters again. I am hoping for a book five, but if that isn’t meant to be, I’ll just re-read them until I memorize them. :P

  26. 5 out of 5

    Jane Potter

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I LOVE THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY!!!! So so so happy to have discovered this fantastic series and feeling rather bittersweet about finishing my reading about the adventures of Reynie, Sticky, Kate, and Constance. There is a lot of good closure in this book. But I also just want to hear more about the society! I feel like it's hard to write a sequel that is so distant from the previous books in timeline. Like the Penderwicks book 5 was just a bit not as good as the first 4 because characters g I LOVE THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY!!!! So so so happy to have discovered this fantastic series and feeling rather bittersweet about finishing my reading about the adventures of Reynie, Sticky, Kate, and Constance. There is a lot of good closure in this book. But I also just want to hear more about the society! I feel like it's hard to write a sequel that is so distant from the previous books in timeline. Like the Penderwicks book 5 was just a bit not as good as the first 4 because characters got too old and distant from the plot. Not so here. The characters are as feisty, intelligent, and endearing as ever. And in many ways, they mostly feel like they are still the little kids we met and rooted for in the original book. I was glad to see that while they are all working through big decisions about life and their futures, they also come to realize how important friendship and family are. I did not think Stewart could surprise me again. I didn't think he could possibly have more crazy twists up his sleeve. But he does! The plot is full of surprising twists and turns that had me turning pages as fast as I could and staying up late to finish the whole thing. The ending is crazy good!!! I love a great twist like that. No more here--go read for yourself. Love the characters. Reynie finally showed some flaws which I appreciate. He feels more real this way. Sticky is great. Love that he is trying to use his given name but it doesn't work. Kate is even more impressive than in the original book with her skydiving, running world record times and her own dart gun. And of course, Constance is fantastic. I am impressed how Stewart uses the telepathy to build his story but it doesn't take over. There are rules about what Constance can do and how much she is capable of. And I loved the addition of Tai Li. I think he makes this book fit with the rest of the series because he is so much younger and sees things from a child's perspective. He is so darling. And of course I love love love Mr Benedict who proves his genius once again :) A great finale to a great series! Sad to finish it for good, but I will definitely be back for more rereads especially with my kids in a few years. Thanks MBS!

  27. 5 out of 5

    Audrey Baker

    I read quite a few books as a child, but this series…I mean, these books were up with my favorites of all time. (Especially the first one, which was just too good for anything else to ever have a chance of living up to, though of course the others were still amazing by ordinary standards.) So one might imagine my excitement upon learning of this new installment! No longer a trilogy, but a…um, tetralogy? I’m not really well-versed in the appropriate terminology, but that’s irrelevant. The point i I read quite a few books as a child, but this series…I mean, these books were up with my favorites of all time. (Especially the first one, which was just too good for anything else to ever have a chance of living up to, though of course the others were still amazing by ordinary standards.) So one might imagine my excitement upon learning of this new installment! No longer a trilogy, but a…um, tetralogy? I’m not really well-versed in the appropriate terminology, but that’s irrelevant. The point is, a new book was out after all these years and I was having a hard time handling the anticipation! It was impossible to read this book without my already established love for the characters coloring my view. The great thing about the MBS is that its greatness doesn’t diminish as the reader ages, an unfortunately common occurrence with books I loved when I was eight (cough cough Warriors series). Maybe I love it even more now? Anyway, I am not the person to go to for an unbiased review of this book. All I can say is that it retains all the cleverness and charm of the originals. Okay, maybe objectively it's not quite as good. The plot is a bit slower. The new addition to the Society seems more a liability than anything, albeit an adorable one. But I just enjoyed being back with my favorite quartet so much, those minor things could be overlooked. Because it's good in its own right too! Even with my nostalgia tinting my opinion somewhat. I will admit that the decisions of the characters at the end in terms of their future paths could have been so much more meaningful if they had blended their childhood attachments with their potential as adults, their new hopes and dreams. That aspect of character development didn’t really happen. Acceptance of changing lives. But you know what, even with any faults - there will always be a special place in my heart for the Society. <3

  28. 4 out of 5

    Ellie

    This book was going to make me cry, no joke. I feel like I grew up with these characters, I was around Reynie's age the first time I read these. And now they're grown up and mature and almost adults and I- MY BABIES ARE GROWN UP...Also reading this, about them getting ready to leave the society is like a direct parallel between my life bc I'm leaving robotics soon so that was just PEACHY thanks Trenton Lee Stewart I'm crying The plot was...not the best and definitely not as good as the plot of the This book was going to make me cry, no joke. I feel like I grew up with these characters, I was around Reynie's age the first time I read these. And now they're grown up and mature and almost adults and I- MY BABIES ARE GROWN UP...Also reading this, about them getting ready to leave the society is like a direct parallel between my life bc I'm leaving robotics soon so that was just PEACHY thanks Trenton Lee Stewart I'm crying The plot was...not the best and definitely not as good as the plot of the first book (which is my favorite and always will be my favorite) but I still loved this so much and...it's not even supposed to be one of those sad books but it was to me and I am about to cry bc: - Kate stopped carrying around her bucket - Sticky wanted to be called George now - Constance dyes her hair - CONSTANCE IS LIKE NINE - WHICH MEANS REYNIE AND GEORGE ARE 17 AND KATE IS 18 - Reynie says there was a time that Constance was actually happy and agreeable - RHONDA IS PREGNANT - At some point since the last book and before this one, each of the older members has had a crush on another member - AND CONSTANCE KNOWS THIS - But she didn't say anything bc despite her flaws she knows where to draw the line - tHis mEans that KATE had liked either Reynie or Sticky - eep - Sticky and Kate thought they were holding Reynie back from the university - The society going back to Nomansan Island and seeing how Curtain did all the stuff he did in the first book and then Kate saying "it's like going backstage at a play we saw together a long time ago" Okay i'm rereading the first one because what choice do I have at this point

  29. 4 out of 5

    Matt

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I never thought I’d ever give a book in this series a bad review, but unfortunately I am. I struggled through this book. I’ve read all the other books in two days or less, but I found myself procrastinating this book. To begin with, the plot was awful and boring. There was no real mission. Everything was an elaborate plan put into place by the Mysterious Benedict Society. Plus it took almost 200 pages before anything exciting even happened. The first 200 pages were basically a retelling of the f I never thought I’d ever give a book in this series a bad review, but unfortunately I am. I struggled through this book. I’ve read all the other books in two days or less, but I found myself procrastinating this book. To begin with, the plot was awful and boring. There was no real mission. Everything was an elaborate plan put into place by the Mysterious Benedict Society. Plus it took almost 200 pages before anything exciting even happened. The first 200 pages were basically a retelling of the first three books. I also found Tai Li extremely annoying. I’m not quite sure why he was even added into the book. His character did not add anything to the plot. The ending of the book was a huge letdown too. I was hoping that they would’ve decided it was time to finally go their own way, but they decided they would just stay together indefinitely. The point of a series is to show growth among characters. I didn’t really see that with the ending we were given. If you have not read this book yet, don’t waste your time! It was a huge letdown. When I reread the series again, I will be skipping the fourth book.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Amy

    I approached this book with some reservations, I admit. While I unabashedly love the first Mysterious Benedict Society, I found each follow-up to be less and less enchanting, until we arrive at this 4th book that I couldn't even finish. The major issue I have with this is that it doubles down on my major issue with the 3rd story - that Constance is actually psychic. Part of what made the original Society so enchanting is that, though each child is exceptional, their skills and abilities are thing I approached this book with some reservations, I admit. While I unabashedly love the first Mysterious Benedict Society, I found each follow-up to be less and less enchanting, until we arrive at this 4th book that I couldn't even finish. The major issue I have with this is that it doubles down on my major issue with the 3rd story - that Constance is actually psychic. Part of what made the original Society so enchanting is that, though each child is exceptional, their skills and abilities are things that real kids can actually emulate - children can watch less television, read a wide variety of things, run around outdoors and be adventurous, and even pay such close attention that they pick up on things no one around them would notice. But real life kids can't be psychic. They can't. And so when Constance is revealed to actually be psychic in the 3rd book, it seems like such a betrayal of the audience and the core principle of the book. I grudgingly finished the 3rd book, and went into this one hoping that somehow, her psychic abilities would be scaled back. On the contrary, not only is she psychic, there's a new child in the story who is ALSO psychic! Why? How does that help? I read about half of this book before giving up and I don't recall any delightful wordplay or puzzles or anything of interest that happened; just Psychic Constance trying to protect the Psychic Kid from the vibrations (or something) of another Psychic who was kidnapped by Mr. Curtain. ALSO, there are many reference to Sticky growing up to be handsome, slender, fit, and with glasses, and you know what? Just let Sticky be gay. Maybe he comes out by the end of the book, I don't know, but he should. Because after all the adventures and self-doubt that plagued his childhood, Sticky deserves to be proud and revel in himself and what makes him wonderful.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.