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The Explorer

Four children board a small plane leaving the Brazilian jungle, each with a different destination. Fred is in his school uniform, a young girl with long blond hair is looking very uncomfortable and the other two, a brother and sister who had said a long goodbye to their parents at the airport.

Fred is fascinated by flying and watches every move the pilot makes from his position in the cockpit of the plane.

As the flight wore on the pilot, a rather older man with a grey waxed moustache became ill, turning as grey as his moustache, coughed, fought to breathe but managed to switch off the plane’s engine before he died.

The plane crash-lands in the Amazon rainforest, leaving the four children frightened and stranded and so begins a wonderful adventure that has Fred struggling to come to terms with the fact that the others seem to think he should know what to do in this dire situation.

Fred has always wondered what it would be like to be an explorer, an adventurer, but always thought it would be something he could find out once he grew up, not right now, lost in the Brazilian jungle!

Once the shock wears off the children decide to camp for the night and try and sort something out in the morning, which was a plan that seemed pretty safe to them all. Once the morning arrived they began to realise no one would come looking for them and they really did have to work together to get out of the mess and out of the jungle, which turned out to be a very tall ask indeed!

Setting off on what appears to be a reasonably clear pathway, they soon come to realise that perhaps they are not alone, perhaps there has been someone here before them, and that if this is the case, all they have to do is follow the pathway and things will be alright. Or so they thought!

As the journey continues into the unknown each of the children has to learn to face their fears and work together, to overcome what turns out to be some horrendous situations, before they can find their way home.

Katherine Rundell has created a wonderful, totally enjoyable adventure, with a touch of Dr Doolittle, Sherlock Holmes and Indiana Jones in the mix, which has great appeal, as well as addressing some of the issues faced by all children as they grow into adulthood.


Author Katherine Rundell. Illustrations : Hannah Horn
Publisher Bloomsbury Children
ISBN 9781408854877
Distributor Bloomsbury
Released September 2017