Epic Ellisons: Cosmos Camp is an accessible and well done illustrated STE(A)M adventure by Lamar Giles. Released 9th May 2023 by Harper Collins on their Children's imprint, it's 288 pages and is available in hardcover, audio, and ebook formats. It's worth noting that the ebook format has a handy interactive table of contents as well as interactive links and references throughout. I've really become enamored of ebooks with interactive formats lately.
Twin prodigies Wiki and Leen are actually looking forward to their first summer apart, with Leen heading off to summer camp and Wiki staying home to manage the farm stand, eradicate mutant moles, and eat gelato. The game's afoot, however, when *both* girls wind up at Camp Cosmos in the middle of a mystery disappearance and related sinister developments.
This is a rollicking well written and lightly illustrated science mystery adventure and will appeal to 8-12 year old avid readers (all ages, honestly, but written for the middle grade audience). There are lots of cool factoids scattered throughout, the protagonists are appealing and realistically rendered, and the action driven plot is well crafted.
The simple pencil illustrated chapter headers by Morgan Bissant are fun and full of motion and energy. They're sketched in and contain a surprising amount of small detail and relate well to their position in the book. They're inviting enough to encourage young readers to pick up a pencil and copy/try their own hand at illustrating their own stories.
For educators who know the importance of diversity and representation, the protagonists are young, female (yay!), science strong, and black (also yay!).
Five stars, this is a very well written book which is quite fun to read and featuring two smart twin sisters who cooperate as a team, and solve mysteries. The ending foreshadows more adventures, which readers and school acquisitions personnel can look forward to in future.
Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.
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