Cairo Jim & Doris In Search Of Martenarten: A Tale Of Archaeology, Adventure & Astonishment by Geoffrey McSkimming

Cairo Jim & Doris In Search Of Martenarten: A Tale Of Archaeology, Adventure & Astonishment by Geoffrey McSkimmingBlurb

Far away in Upper Egypt, in a place known as the Valley of the Kings, Cairo Jim (assisted by the hieroglyph-reading macaw Doris and Brenda the Wonder Camel) is searching for the lost tomb of Pharaoh Martenarten, Worshipper of the Moon and King of Ancient Egypt.

It is not an easy search. Plagued by uncertainty, the dauntless trio persevere in a harsh climate made all the more worse by dust, sand and petty skulduggery.

But these are the least of their troubles. Somebody of great deviousness, treachery and manicured evil wants what they are after. And he will stop at nothing to claim it for his own!

My Perspective

I’ve been ripping through the Ranger’s Apprentice series and when I finished Oakleaf Bearers, I had to wait over the weekend before I saw the customer who’s lending them to me to borrow the next two books in the series. I couldn’t wait that long to read a book but I didn’t want something too engrossing that would take me away from the Ranger’s Apprentice. So Cairo Jim it was.

Cairo Jim & Doris In Search Of Martenarten: A Tale Of Archaeology, Adventure & Astonishment is obviously about Cairo Jim, Doris and Brenda searching for the lost tomb of Marenaratan. The only problem is that there is also someone else searching and they will stop at nothing to find the tomb and claim it for themselves.

The story is written in a silly albeit will written style very suited to children. I still greatly enjoyed it however if you don’t like a bit of obvious silliness then you may not enjoy this book.

The characters were brilliant. Cairo Jim is such a soft soul, you can’t help but like him. Doris and Brenda are fantastic “side kicks” with their funny perks and they really add to the story. And the villains were everything children’s villains should be. Gross and slimy with grandiose ideas. I also love that the villain is a recurring villain in the Cairo Jim Chronicles. There is just something about them that makes you love and hate them at the same time.

The actual story was interesting however not as gripping as the Cairo Jim On The Trail To Cha Cha Muchos. I would still recommend it for children and adults who like a silly adventure/mystery with a bit of history thrown in.


Cairo Jim On The Trail To Cha Cha Muchos by Geoffrey McSkimming

Cairo Jim On The Trail To Cha Cha Muchos by Geoffrey McSkimmingBlurb

Legend has it that somewhere in Peru, atop a towering, jungle-covered mountain, stand the ruins of ChaCha Muchos, the Lost City of Dancers. What happened there nearly five hundred years ago remains a mystery. Who were these people? And why, in the end, did the entire tribe dance itself into extinction?

When that well-known archaeologist and little-known poet, Cairo Jim, sets out to solve the mystery, he doesn’t know that he is not the only one on the trail to ChaCha Muchos…

My Perspective

Obviously after reading Eragon, I wanted to start reading Eldest straight away. However of course our Internet dropped out for half the day and I couldn’t borrow the eBook from my library.

I decided to read the first of the Cairo Jim books instead, as they aren’t super long so if the Internet came back up and I was able to download Eldest, I wouldn’t be embroiled in another book.

The story introduces us to Cairo Jim, well-known archaeologist and little-known poet, on his quest to discover Cha Cha Muchos: The Lost City of Dancers. Little does he know that the devious and slimy Neptune Bone, is also on a quest to discover this mystical place however not for the same upstanding reasons as Cairo Jim. Who will be the one to find it first and will Cairo Jim be able to stop the notorious Neptune Bone before it’s too late?

The story is aimed at older children however can be enjoyed by all ages. It was well written and easy to understand. The humour was very much aimed at older children and some of the text was a little bit over the top, however again, it was perfect for its target audience.

The characters were developed nicely for the length of the story and there wasn’t a lot of unnecessary background information that most children couldn’t give a rip about.

The story grabbed you from the start and there was enough mystery throughout to keep you on your toes. Some of the storyline was quite predictable however honestly the main plot kept me guessing right up until the very end. The fact that a children’s book was able to keep an adult guessing goes to show the ability of the author. There are a lot of adult novels out there that don’t live up to that standard.

Overall I really enjoyed reading the book (I’ve actually read it before when I was in primary school however much to my horror that was around fifteen years ago so as you can see, the story wasn’t quite fresh in my brain). I would definitely feel comfortable letting my children read this book and I would recommend it to anyone wanting to read a bit of a silly albeit well done mystery/adventure.

Cairo Jim

When i was in year four at school, we had an author come and visit us. His name was Geoffrey McSkimming and he is the author of the series, Cairo Jim. I remember being in awe of him, and how funny and vibrant he was. I started reading his books and from memory i think I’ve read every single one of the Cairo Jim stories. The other day on eBay i saw someone selling a bunch of his books and i couldn’t resist. I bought them. They are such a fun read, and books that i can’t wait to introduce to the children we hope to have one day. As a kid, i read them over and over again and i remember thinking to myself that Geoffrey McSkimming was actually Cairo Jim, he was just pretending to be Geoffrey McSkimming.

When Geoffrey McSkimming was a boy he found an old motion-picture projector and a tin containing a dusty home movie in his grandmother’s attic. He screened the film and was transfixed by the flickering image of a man in a jaunty pith helmet, baggy Sahara shorts and special desert sun-spectacles. The man had an imposing macaw and a clever looking camel, and Geoffrey Mcskimming was mesmerised by their activities in black-and-white Egypt, Peru, Greece, Mexico, Sumatra, Turkey, Italy and other exotic locations. Years later he discovered the identities of the trio, and has spent much of his time since then retracing their footsteps, interviewing surviving members of the Old Relics Society, and gradually reconstructing the lost true tales of Cairo Jim, which have become the enormously successful Cairo Jim chronicles.”

Cairo Jim Books