With the so-called end of the Mayan calendar fast approaching, fourteen-year-old Max Murphy and his new friend Lola, the modern Maya girl who saved his life in the perilous jungle, are racing against time to outwit the twelve Lords of Death. Following the trail of the conquistadors, their quest takes them back to the wild heart of Spain - a forgotten land steeped in legend, superstition and ever more bizarre tourist festivals.
With a pack of hellhounds on their heels and the cape-twirling Count Antonio de Landa in hot pursuit, the teens must face madness and betrayal, bluff and double-bluff, to uncover the terrible secrets of the long-lost Yellow Jaguar. But no matter where they run, all roads lead to Xibalba. There, in the cold and watery Maya underworld, we finally discover why only Max Murphy can save the world from the villainous Lords of Death.
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“Think way back to the 1920s and adventure series like Tom Swift or Bomba the Jungle Boy, and you’ll get an idea of what readers are in for here. The Voelkels’ first novel in the Jaguar Stones series, Middleworld (2007), introduced 14-year-old Max Murphy, the only child of world-famous archaeologists. (These are just the kind of work-obsessed parents—prone to taking a kid into a tomb and then forgetting all about him—that an adventuring kid needs.) Mayan Death Lords, a deadline to find a precious stone to stave off the end of the world, and lots of Mayan lore make this a fact-packed, thrilling ride. Rick Riordan fans will love it.” Booklist
“Full of adventure, laughs, and interesting history, I would not hesitate to hand the Jaguar Stones books to readers who are waiting for Riordan’s next book. The history is fascinating, the Mayans folklore is just “gross” enough, and the characters will make you laugh out loud... Highly recommended for tween/teen readers.
“The action/adventure mixed with hair-raising mythology and zany humor is a truly terrific combo. In fact it is sometimes scary, gory, and yucky - keeping it fresh and different from most books out there that are still acceptable to be read by nearly any age. With twists and turns and lots of surprises, The End of the World Club is easily recommendable.”
The danger and suspense is nonstop, with many surprises, along the way. The intensity gradually builds throughout the last half of the book to an unexpected ending. With plenty of humor to lighten the dark and ominous mood, this fantasy adventure series is a fun read for middle readers on up.