3rd Grade and Up
When Uchenna and Elliot’s classmate publishes an article in the school newspaper about the Schmoke Brothers, Professor Fauna notices something alarming in a photo. Mounted on the wall of the Schmoke’s living room is a single spiral horn that he’s certain could have come from only one animal – a unicorn! To save these magical creatures – and to finally see a unicorn themselves – the Unicorn Rescue Society heads to the rugged mountains of Pakistan.
This really is the Unicorn Rescue Society’s biggest adventure yet. Taking place in the Himalayan mountains in Northern Pakistan, they are going farther than they have ever gone before.
I was extra excited to read this particular adventure, mainly because it takes place outside North America. I enjoyed learning about the history, the food, the faith, and the culture of Pakistan. I especially loved the concept of Ibn-al-Sabil, the welcoming and feeding of travelers, a core value for Muslims. Coincidentally, I had recently read another story that took place in South Asia so the mountain setting felt familiar to me. I’m happy to be finding more and more diversity in middle school literature.
This story is a bit different than the past five books. The story includes the history, culture, food and mythology of Pakistan but the creature they end up finding isn’t what you would expect. As Waleed, the nice Pakistani boy they met, would say: “In life, do not expect anything except surprise.” I don’t want to give away any spoilers so I’m going to stop here.
I have no idea where the Unicorn Rescue Society are heading next. If you look at the Official World Map at the front of the book you’ll see that there is still a lot of the world left to explore. I’m hoping this series lasts at least another four books. I’m still want a Loch Ness Monster story and a mermaid story. Professor Fauna has mentioned mermaids so if we at least get a mermaid adventure I’ll be happy.
Be sure to read Hena Khan’s Author’s Note in the back of the book. My favorite thing about this series is that Adam Gidwitz co-writes with an author who is an expert in each country.
Defende Fabulosa! Protégé Mythica!