Adventure Island

Adventure Island is a series of exciting mysteries for 7-12 year old readers. Set on the fictional island of Castle Key, off the coast of Cornwall, the books follow brothers, Scott and Jack Carter, their friend Emily Wild and her super-smart dog, Drift as they investigate a series of baffling mysteries. With stunning covers by artist, Roy Knipe, and beautiful chapter illustrations by Leo Hartas the books are just right for anyone who loves mystery and adventure.
Adventure Island is published by Orion Children's Books. The series is marketed for readers of 8-12, but is also suitable if you are a younger confident reader or would like to listen to the stories being read out loud.  
There are fourteen titles in the Adventure Island series. Each book contains a separate mystery, so you don't have to read them in order, but you might want to start at the beginning; that's where you first meet the characters and there are some themes and sub-plots that develop over the course of the series.  
Several of the books have been translated into other languages, including French, Dutch, Japanese, Portuguese and Bulgarian. 
All are available as paperbacks or e-books. Several of the titles have also been translated into other languages, including Japanese, French, Dutch, Portuguese and Bulgarian. The first book of the series, The Mystery of the Whistling Caves is available as an audiobook from Oakhill Publishing.
Book by book . . .

The Mystery of the Whistling Caves (2011) 
When Scott and Jack Carter have to stay with their great aunt for the summer they steel themselves for the most boring holiday ever. But then they meet Emily Wild and her lovable dog, Drift. Emily shows them the lighthouse, the castle - and the amazing whistling caves. Legend has it that when the caves stop whistling the castle will be attacked - and that's exactly what happens! Priceless treasures are stolen and Emily and the boys are determined to investigate. But how was the treasure smuggled out of the castle? Why did the caves stop whistling? And can the friends solve the mystery in time to catch the thief?
The Mystery of the Whistling Caves was awarded a Holyer an Gof award in 2012 and was shortlisted for the Lancashire Fabulous Books Awards in 2013.
The Mystery of the Midnight Ghost (2011)

When Scott , Jack and Emily hear that a film is being made at the nearby manor house they can't resist going to watch. But when the glamorous star of the film vanishes the friends realize they have a new mystery to solve!

Has the star been kidnapped by a crazed fan? Could she have run off with her boyfriend? Or did she venture into the manor's attic at midnight and fall foul of the legendary ghost that haunts the old house?
 The Mystery of the Hidden Gold (2011)

A game of hide and seek in the old Castle Key lighthouse during a violent thunder storm leads to an amazing discovery - a tattered old treasure map! Scott, Jack and Emily can't wait to search for the hidden gold but first they must solve the clues to uncover its secret hiding place. And someone else is after the gold too - someone who doesn't plan to let anyone get in their way! Can our heroes figure out the map, outwit their enemy and find the hidden treasure? 

The Mystery of the Missing Masterpiece (2011)

When thieves raid the house of a neighbour, Emily, Jack and Scott are ready to investigate. But, strangely, the neighbour doesn't seem to want the thieves to be caught! The burglars didn't escape with much this time but could the raid be connected to a much older crime involving millions of pounds? The friends begin to uncover the truth, but are they leading themselves into serious danger? 
The Mystery of the Cursed Ruby (2011)

The circus comes to town, full of conjurors, clowns, tightrope walkers and trapeze artists. But dark secrets lurk beneath the sawdust and spangles - secrets that are part of a dangerous mystery that might prove impossible to solve!
That's if Scott, Jack, Emily and Drift weren't on the case, of course!

The Mystery of the Vanishing Skeleton (2011)
A string of unusual crimes hits Castle Key and the chief suspect seems to be a skeleton! Scott, Jack, Emily and Drift the dog immediately start investigating, but nothing about the mystery makes sense. Will the friends finally be defeated by this baffling mix of crimes and the mysterious culprit, or can they uncover the sinister secret that connects them all?




The Mystery of the Dinosaur Discovery (2012)

When Scott, Jack and Emily stumble upon some bones in the quarry above Castle Key, they're convinced they've discovered the gruesome remains of a murder victim! But the bones turn out to be much, much older than that - could they be dinosaur bones? Or are they the last earthly remains of a real dragon? Rival scientists fight to prove each other wrong, while the friends are determined to uncover the truth - with a little help from Drift the dog, of course!



The Mystery of the Drowning Man (2012)

When Scott, Jack, Emily and Drift rescue a drowning man from the waves they are keen to hear his story, but their new friend can't remember his own name, let alone how he came to be stranded at sea! Who is the mystery man? Why did he come to Castle Key? And was his drowning an accident - or attempted murder? The friends are on the case - with enthusiastic assistance from Drift the dog - determined to find the truth and solve the mystery of the drowning man.
The Mystery of the Smugglers' Wreck (2012)

A research team arrives in Castle Key to explore the wreck of an old smugglers' ship that sank in Pirate Cove. When Scott and Emily dive down to the wreck, Scott glimpses a long lost artefact said to hold the key to a hoard of smuggled treasure. But when the team leader goes back to recover the artefact, it has mysteriously vanished! Was Scott mistaken or is somebody else after the smugglers' loot? Follow Scott, Jack, Emily and Drift on a very mysterious treasure hunt.


The Mystery of the Invisible Spy (2012)

There's a new resident in Castle Key - and somebody is watching him! Scott, Jack, Emily and Drift soon suspect that the new resident is an enemy spy. It explains the bullet-proof glass in the windows of his house. And the MI5 agent who is clearly keeping tabs on him! But what is an enemy spy doing in Castle Key? Can the friends reveal his true identity? And uncover his top secret mission? Join Scott, Jack, Emily and Drift as they investigate a man so mysterious he's almost invisible! 
The Mystery of the King's Ransom (2013)

When a young prince is kidnapped while on a school camping trip in Castle Key, Scott, Jack, Emily and Drift are eager to take on the case. Drift's clever nose is sure to sniff out some clues to the kidnappers - but can the friends rescue the hostage in time?
The Mystery of the Black Salamander (2013) 

Scott, Jack and Emily are excited when they are invited to go and watch the testing of a top secret, super-advanced, prototype car. It's just like something out of a James Bond movie - and a secret agent is exactly what's required when the car mysteriously vanishes! Luckily, the friends are on hand to find the car, catch the culprits and save the day - with a little help from Drift the dog, of course!

The Mystery of the Secret Room (2013)

When Boomerang the cat discovers a hidden room, Scott, Jack, Emily and Drift the dog are on hand to investigate. An enormous treasure chest inside the room holds clues to an ancient secret and a lost relic! The friends are determined to solve the puzzle, but someone else wants the artefact - someone who'll stop at nothing to get it . . . Join Scott, Jack, Emily and Drift in the race to discover a mystical treasure!

The Mystery of the Phantom Lights (2013)

Something strange is afoot on the moors above Castle Key - sinister noises, lights in the sky and mysterious figures moving in the dark. Are aliens invading, as Jack suspects? Could it be smugglers, as Emily thinks? Or is there another explanation? Scott, Jack, Emily and Drift the dog are on the case!


Selected Reviews for the Adventure Island series . . .

Cracking adventures on the island of Castle Key are at the heart of this exciting series. (JULIA ECCLESHARE, LOVE READING FOR KIDS)

Readable, punchy stories with cliffhanger chapter endings will help to build up reading stamina, (BOOKS FOR KEEPS)

Helen Moss is one of those writers who have realised children are not stupid.The books are not dumbed down, but they are not difficult to read either.I have noticed it has got children that are reluctant to read interested and it is a very gender neutral title, both in presentation and the characters. (JOSH CLARK, OXFORD MAIL)

They’re adventure books for about 6+ and are so exciting. You just can’t put them down! (Aimée Schilder, aged 9, AQUILA MAGAZINE)

The books are real page turners and perfect for anyone between eight and twelve. I cannot recommend them highly enough as they are the best mystery series in my generation. (AMY SMITH, DAILY RECORD)

A wonderful sense of place, (conveying the shivers that accompany a true adventure) . . . perfect for boys and girls, reluctant readers and book lovers alike! (KIDSBOOKS)

Written in a pacy and child-friendly tone by the talented Helen Moss, the books are never less than captivating and are sure to evoke memories of Enid Blyton's Famous Five and Secret Seven, while also offering a more contemporary approach to adventure novels. (THE BOOK PEOPLE)

"A page-turning adventure in the grand tradition of Enid Blyton’s Famous Five." (WORLD BOOK DAY)

"The Famous Five meets Artemis Fowl in The Mystery of the Whistling Caves, an up to the minute adventure with postmodern Blytonian references. The children, with mandatory dog, use their cunning to find the culprit in a series of museum thefts. A retro look gives it appeal to children and adults alike." (Jake Hope THE BOOKSELLER ) 

"Nothing is what it seems as the young mystery solvers try to untangle a web of lies, misdirection and hidden agendas on the small Cornish Island. The Adventure Island series is a reassuring balance of innocence and adventure. Helen Moss captures the spirit of Enid Blyton but roots the story very firmly in the twenty-first century and for a modern audience. [BENJAMIN SCOTT, CAROUSEL]

"The Mystery of the Whistling Caves by Helen Moss is being launched as a new, contemporary Blyton-esque adventure series and certainly contains all the elements: caves, secret passages and a good old-fashioned crime to solve. With references to hoodies, rock bands and computer games, this is a fun reworking of a winning formula and a great recommendation for any reader in search of adventure." (Vanessa Lewis THE BOOKSELLER )

“As soon as I started to read this book, I was instantly transported back to my younger reading days. These were happy days, where I could be found with my nose buried in the adventures of the Famous Five or the Secret Seven, and loving every minute of them. I had this very same feeling wash over me as I was reading this book." (MR RIPLEY’S ENCHANTED BOOKS)

"Whilst reading this book, I found myself instantly transported back to my childhood, reading my beloved Enid Blyton books. Helen Moss has captured that Blytonesque essence, bottled it, added a dash of real life and and a slice of modern times to create a whole new series for today's generation." (SERENDIPITY REVIEWS )

"A great romp of a story, definitely a page turner, and would make fabulous holiday reading." (THE BOOKBAG ) 

"Moss has taken the time-honoured Enid Blyton 'Famous Five' formula and given it an extremely successful contemporary twist. Rather than just a re-hash, Moss has made this her own and given us a brilliant, straight-forward mystery series for a whole new generation of readers!" (FALLEN STAR STORIES)

 "The characters are well developed and the main characters are warm, likable children. The 'celebrity' life of the modern day film star is also realistically portrayed. This exciting story moves along at a fast pace with the reader's attention being held captive to the very end." (READING ZONE)

"The Mystery of the Midnight Ghost is another charming adventure story with a beautiful setting which allows the children to ride around on their bikes and camp overnight on the beach without parental supervision. (TEENAGE FICTION FOR ALL AGES) 

"The book has a surprising ending. I would give it a ten out of ten. I can't say anything bad about it. My favourite bit is when they meet at the tree-house to discuss the robbery and that is where the mystery starts. Then it get's mind-boggling and you don't know what is going to happen next." (GUARDIAN CHILDREN'S BOOKS, CHILD'S REVIEW)

"The Adventure Island series certainly lives up to its name, with Enid Blyton-esque mysteries set firmly in the present day – complete with mobile phones. ." (JENNY SMITH, SCHOLASTIC)

Lovely traditional style stories, well-written and pacy enough to appeal to today's readers." (PARENTS IN TOUCH)

"My 8-year old son is an avid reader of adventure stories with Enid Blyton his very favourite author. He really enjoyed this book and says it as great as those by Blyton - high praise indeed . . . he is delighted to have discovered this series  and is now asking for the first six books." [JUNO MAGAZINE]

"A fantastic book, which as soon as you read the first page, makes you want to read on." [MYKINDOFBOOK]

"Another story in this excellent series for adventure loving children who enjoy good old-fashioned story-telling.[...] I loved Enid Blyton and can vividly recall reading her books whilst on holiday - this series makes equally good holiday reading."(PARENTS IN TOUCH)

"Amazing mystery with cliffhangers after chapters. When I started reading, I couldn't put it down!" [READER REVIEW, SUMMER READING CHALLENGE] You can find more Summer Reading Challenge Reviews here.

"This is a fun read – it has a fast-paced plot with a good twist, likeable characters and a dramatic ending. It reminds me of Enid Blyton’s Famous Five and Secret Seven stories I used to read as a child – so the Adventure Island series gets the thumbs up from me!"  (BOOK A POET)

"Book 10 of a series that harks back to Enid Blyton. The likeable characters are reanimated for the 21st century, and everything is brought up to date, including bullet proof glass and MI5." (THE TELEGRAPH SUMMER READS) 

"This was a gripping adventure, a very easy yet inspiring read and a book I recommend. The author really dived in and pulled out all the stops for a good mystery." (GUARDIAN CHILDREN'S BOOK CLUB, READER REVIEW)

"This is a really exciting story, my favourite out of the Adventure Island series, so far – because you discover Aunt Kate’s history and there is a great twist!" [MYKINDOFBOOK]

"I highly recommend it and all the other books in this series, especially for holiday reading."[KATE CHESTERTON, BROADHURST BOOKS, SOUTHPORT]

"Moss has created a world populated with Scott, Jack, Emily, and Drift the dog. These kids show gumption and no mattter what the obstacles they try their best to overcome them.
The map in the first page of the book adds to mystery and invites us into the story. Illustrations, by Leo Hartas, and the Moss's story combine to result in a great read. A great summer read for kids." (MICHELLE MOLONEY KING)

I like the Adventure Island books because they are funny and exciting . . . My favourite is The Mystery of the Secret Room because it's not really to do with a crime, but all the rest are good too and I have read them lots of times. (SUPERBEN, CHILD'S REVIEW, THE GUARDIAN CHILDREN'S BOOKS WEBSITE)