Thursday, September 11, 2014

Double Eagle by Sneed B. Collard III

Mike is dreading the summer with his marine biologist dad in Florida. But plans change when Mike’s dad decides to teach a summer course on an island off Alabama’s coast. Soon after his arrival, Mike makes friends with Kyle, a charismatic southern boy who is familiar with the island. While hanging out at an old Civil War fort, Mike happens upon a gold Confederate coin. When the boys look for more coins, they can’t. They find help in a local man whose ancestry goes back to the time the coins arrived at the fort.

Collard creates an unpredictable story by expertly weaving together Civil War history, rare coins, a disastrous hurricane, and an unlikely friendship. In many young adult stories involving the discovery of a missing artifact, it usually seems far-fetched that the teen characters are the only ones who find the lost item, even after experts have tried and failed. But in Double Eagle, Collard sets up a realistic premise where it’s plausible that Mike and Kyle are the only ones who find the Confederate gold. They had a crucial piece of Civil War history that other experts didn’t have. If readers enjoyed the friendship of Mike and Kyle and their search for rare coins, readers will be happy to know that Collard published a sequel called Cartwheel.

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