Welcome to Middle Grade Monday! Today I am reviewing The Emperor's Riddle by Kat Zhang. To check out all the other stops that do Middle Grade Monday check out our new hub at Always in the Middle... by Greg Pattridge.
Mia decides that if she solves the riddles that lead to the hidden treasure she will be able to stop Ying and save her aunt. With help from her brother, Jake, the two of them search for the missing clues and journey around the countryside to piece together the puzzle.
Ying is on their trail and he is dangerous. Will they beat him to the treasure and save their aunt?
I love books that have riddles to solve and involve some sort of quest. This one fits the bill. I enjoyed following Mia and Jake as they solved the riddles, toured the Chinese countryside and then put together a map that lead to what might be the treasure. Throughout the book there are images of the map that the author fills in as Mia solves the clues.
I enjoyed learning about the Chinese culture and parts of their emperorial history. Mia is a great character who feels jealous that her brother no longer wants to hang out with her and is angry with her uncle for no good reason. She is a typical teenager, however, she is also someone whose head is filled with adventure and mystery, just like her globe trotting Aunt Lin. They are two peas in a pod. Which makes Mia's quest to find her aunt even more important.
Could it really happen? Who knows? But this is a great adventure book for middle graders that adds a cultural twist. 4 stars!