Running the Rapids ... and Escaping Alive?


Dylan Sands is a city boy who loves the outdoors. When he gets the chance to ride the Rio Grande in Big Bend National Park with his Uncle and cousin in Texas, he jumps at the chance. By the time he gets to Rio Bravo, their small town, plans have changed. His Uncle is on a river job in Alaska, leaving Dylan with his cousin Rio.

Together, the boys decide "let's do this." They planned carefully for everything - except the Mexican drug lord and the young companion he's kidnapped. With a gun to their heads, a hurricane, and unfamiliar rapids ahead, how will they make it out alive?

Reader Enjoyment Factors:

Adventure and mystery lovers will enjoy this combination of an action-packed river trip and the case of "who's the boy?"

Content Awareness Factors:

If your reader tends to make dangerous choices, then you may want to read this together. The boys make some irresponsible decisions and while there is a happy ending here, that isn't always real life.

Parent Reaction

To me, the blurb on the back cover said "page turner." Unfortunately, the story itself fell flat. The initial impression of Dylan's ncle is that he is not stable / good provider. So when Dylan arrives in Texas and Uncle Alan is gone, I thought this was a scam and that he had ulterior motives. It left me uncomfortable and I disnegaged from the characters the rest of the way.

Type of Book:
This is a fast-paced story with heavy overtones of the realities of life on a border town.
Educational Themes:

This would be a good choice for a family read aloud or boys book club. There is plenty to discuss about choices, consequences, and the "real world" that many kids don't know about.

Reading Level:
Recommended Age To Read By Yourself:
10 and Up
Recommended Age To Read Together:
10 and Up
Purchase Recommendation:
Borrow. This book will appeal to readers who like fast-paced adventures, but it may not be a keeper for a personal library.

Title Take Me to the River
Author Will Hobbs
Publisher HarperCollins Publishers © 2011
ISBN 9780060741440
Material Hard Cover
Cost $15.99
Genres Adventure, Mystery
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