The Extraordinary Education of Nicholas Benedict: A Book Review


The Extraordinary Education of Nicholas Benedict (The Mysterious Benedict Society)

The Extraordinary Education of Nicholas Benedict by Trenton Lee Stewart

Summary: Nine-year old Nicholas Benedict is one very clever little boy. Going in out of orphanages his whole life, Nicholas also suffers from narcolepsy, a condition that makes him fall asleep at the worst moments and have terrifying nightmares. Despite his troubles, Nick has been able to keep a positive outlook on life. He’s now being sent to a new orphanage, and Nicholas believes that it can’t be any worse than the last one. He was wrong. There, at Rothschild’s End, Nick is being cared for by the evil and awfully greedy Mr. Collum, has already made enemies with the “Spiders,” and discovered that he will be locked in his room all night! How can he go exploring and discover all of the nooks and crannies of the manor if he can’t even escape his bedroom?! Fortunately, Nick made friends with John, one of the older boys, who gave Nicholas a warm welcome. With John and the possibility of hidden treasure, Nicholas is able to survive, even when he has to endure the wrath of the “Spiders,” three bullies who want to make Nick’s life miserable. All in all, Nick has a pleasant beginning at his new home. But something is bound to happen when you are a genius…

My Thoughts: I LOVED The Mysterious Benedict Society series, and I have been anxiously awaiting the arrival of this one! I was intrigued to read about Mr. Benedict’s childhood, considering what an odd lifestyle he had as an adult. The author’s style of writing was exactly the same, and the story flowed nicely. I did think that there was a *teeny* bit of excess information, especially when it was in description, but it only added to the vivid images he creates. Little Nick was the BEST :) He reminded me of the older Mr. Benedict in so many ways, but you could tell how he matured throughout the story. He was extremely clever, and I enjoyed all of his brilliant ideas. And, yes, sometimes he did act kind of bratty, but there was one point {near the end, I believe} in which the author explained why he was so self-centered, which I appreciated. John was super, too! He and I were always fed up with Nick at the same time :) I thought he played the part of the responsible friend quite well. I wanted to cry when he was adopted. It was like he died! No worries, however. It all worked out in the end. Violet was a sweetie. {except in the beginning. I thought she was a bit creepy.} Oh, it was nice to have a trustworthy girl character in the story. The rest of the female characters weren’t exactly role models… Mr. Collum was an absolute JERK! I’m really glad he’s fictional because he should not have been qualified to take care of children. He did turn a bit nicer at the end. A bit. The actual mystery was suspenseful, and I did not expect the ending. There were enough false leads and clues so it wasn’t predictable. Finally, because I don’t want to give too much away, I <3 the man on the train. *sigh* I actually wish Nick would have went to live with that cousin. But, with that being said, would he have formed the society otherwise? Anyhoo, this was another winner by Trenton Lee Stewart! I bet you can guess I’m waiting for the next one.

Pros: Developed characters, descriptive writing, and an entertaining story.

Cons: The beginning took a bit until I got into the story.

Heads Up: A small amount of violence.

Overall: I give it 4 1/2 {**** 1/2} stars. I recommend it for ages 11 and up.

Smash was eventful this week, that’s for sure! I’m so excited that Karen said yes! :)

Brittany’s dinosaur-themed prom? SO funny!

Bella :)


One thought on “The Extraordinary Education of Nicholas Benedict: A Book Review

  1. […] King George returns with yet another hilarious solo; in “What Comes Next?,” he asks the American people what they plan to do following the Battle of Yorktown and the end of the war. As a history nut, I love to put the context behind the song, but as a bookworm, I can only wish for, as the prompt asks, more installments of The Mysterious Benedict Society series by Trenton Lee Stewart. Another book would be awesome, indeed. {review} […]


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