“In the history of the world there have been lots of onces and lots of times, and every time has had a once upon it.”
So begins Leepike Ridge by N. D. Wilson. After reading A Hundred Cupboards, I was interested in trying something else by Wilson and then…there it was, on Ivy’s reading list for Literature last year! When the Covid quarantine kicked in, we decided to read it as a family, thus cutting her homeschool work down a bit while allowing us all to enjoy the story.
In brief, this story follows the adventure of Tom Hammond who, along with his mother, lives in an old, out of the way house near Leepike Ridge. When Tom is accidentally swept beneath the mountain by a nearby stream, his fight for survival is on. But there is more to these caves than geology; a story of treasure and murder lies below, one whose truth will upset Tom’s understanding of the world in more ways than one. As his mother fends off self-intrested suitors and despair above, Tom fights to find his way home while picking up some unexpected companions along the way.
Great book! Wilson is an excellent writer and his ability to create something more than a “kid’s book” is exemplified in the fact that Leepike Ridge was enjoyed by our whole family. His characters are well crafted and the various plot strands tie themselves into a delightful bow at the end. I will say, however, that this is not a tale for a very sensitive child: the suspense and danger are very real and bring the reader face to face with murder and death. There are also some serious emotional themes relating to the death of a parent and what happens when the remaining parent begins to think romantically again.
All in all, a great read!
|Profanity||1.5||One or two expletives.|
|Violence||2||Tom finds a dead body floating in an underground lake. There are also treasure hunters who kill – and are killed – in their search beneath the ridge.|
|Sex/Romantic Themes||1||One of Tom’s mother’s suitors has asked her to marry him and makes occasional attempts to kiss her. She also becomes the center of several other attempted marriages – of various quality – but there’s nothing overtly sexual.|
NOTE: As always, my content notes are for informational purposes, not judgmental ones. For a full explanation of my Content Notes and the scale, click here.