MAADI'S ADVENTURES IN EGYPT
Maadi is a free-spirited dog who loves adventure. She believes in learning and having fun while doing so. She has the opportunity to visit and experience the antiquities, sights, and cultures of Egypt. As young readers join her in this enjoyable journey, they will not only develop a knowledge and an appreciation for Egypt’s world famous antiquities, but also for the history, the people, the surroundings, and the local customs of this diverse country, presenting a unique cultural awareness.
The heart of this book is the premise that the four most important aspects for a novel for children should be that it educate, entertain, enrich, and inspire.
Educate: While visiting the antiquities and landmarks of Egypt, Maadi discovers the fascinating histories of the Great Pyramids and Sphinx, the tombs of the Valley of the Kings, the Suez Canal, the Nile River, and the treasures of the Egyptian Museum
Entertain: While attaining the valuable information about these antiquities and landmarks, she has her own personal adventures: leading the guards on a frantic treasure-endangering chase through the Egyptian Museum; humorously observing her master being outsmarted by a camel driver at the Pyramids, joining forces with a befriended wild dog at the Valley of the Kings to save the famous King Tut tomb from vandal tomb robbers; spending many hours alongside the Suez Canal running on the sand dunes, swimming in the canal, and getting to know some of the wild dogs passing through; and becoming the subject of a desperate rescue mission on the Nile river. She also twice succumbs to her call-of-the-wild instinct, once resulting in her becoming hopelessly lost in the bowels of downtown Cairo, and once on the sand dunes of the Suez Canal, where she becomes trapped in a grave life and death situation.
Enrich: The young reader will be enriched with the knowledge gained of the exotic sites, the antiquities, and an intriguing new culture.
Inspire: Young readers, after learning the history, and viewing the photos of these exotic sites, and of the people, will not only be inspired to further explore the mystique of Egypt, but will also be inspired to discover the world.
Loaded with photographs, this book will whet the young adventurous appetite for Egypt, and the world, bringing Egypt to life, as this delightful story provides the young reader with an appreciation of not only the antiquities, but the people, the history, the surroundings, and the local customs of this diverse country half way around the world.
(Warning - Grownups may also find this an entertaining and enjoyable read.)
Maadi showed up as a stray on the author’s doorstep when she was about 10 months old. In her lifetime she has become quite a traveler, spending three years in Egypt, a month traveling through Europe, and three years in Jordan. Many of her adventures in this novel were based on actual happenings, including her relationships with Baladi, the wild dog on the dunes, and with Atef the building boab and his family. She was an ambassador for her canine brothers and sisters. With her good nature and loving personality, she was able to conquer the fear and distrust of dogs inherent in the Middle Eastern culture. She has slowed down, needs help getting in and out of the car, and is getting a little cranky, but she still loves adventures and going for walks in the woods and playing in the snow. She is excited about this novel, and invites all people, young and old, to join her on this delightful journey.
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[Following is the official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Maadi's Adventures in Egypt" by Bill Wilke.]
4 out of 4 stars
Review by Ramona
Adventures in Egypt by Bill Wilke is an exciting and educational tale
about a dog's adventures in Egypt narrated by the dog! Maadi describes herself
in the following words: "My father, Wolf, is a Siberian husky, and my
mother, Sonia, a black lab. My combination of husky and black lab results in
confusion between the husky call of the wild, and the obedient black lab genes.
I was named after a suburb of Cairo, Maadi, which is pronounced Maudy."
Well, obviously, dogs cannot talk or write, so this story is fiction, but the dog on which the story is based is real. The ficticious Maadi tells the story of living in Egypt with her humans, Bob and Kathy. She relates her conversations with dogs, but other than dogs talking with each other, their actions remain true to the character of dogs. Maadi does things that a dog would do in real life. In her interactions with Bob and Kathy and other humans, she acts as a real dog would.
Bill Wilke worked in Egypt for several years. Maadi is a stray who showed up on his doorstep when she was about ten months old. The author has taken many of Egypt's geographical and historical facts, along with his and Maadi's real experiences, and has woven them into a fascinating piece of fiction. The story is written in first person point of view from a dog's perspective. The author does a wonderful job of "showing, not telling" Maadi's life in Egypt with vivid vocabulary.
The story is full of entertaining adventures with a little mystery tucked in it as Maadi, the main character, tells her story, talks with the dogs she meets, and lives in a loving home with Bob and Kathy. Although Bob and Kathy are necessary characters to the story, their development is a little less round than Maadi's character. They are there when needed, but Maadi is the protagonist pre-eminent! There are many other good characters and several antagonists sprinkled throughout who add excitement to the story. Some of them are wild dogs and some are humans; they all contribute nicely to moving the action along.
Maadi loves Bob and Kathy and does not exactly want to disobey, but her call-of-the-wild Husky genes get her into some mischief every once in a while. There are moments in the story when Maadi gets into serious trouble. Then the reader wonders how the adventure is going to turn out!
There was the time when Maadi was being chased by three large Dobermans. She tells it this way: "Every few strides, I glanced back over my shoulder. It was always the same. Each time three sets of the biggest, sharpest, shiniest, white teeth I’ve ever seen, framed in three snarling mouths, with saliva oozing from the corners were drawing ever closer. Unless I got a break soon, I was going to be a big doggie play toy, tossed in the air, and torn apart in several pieces."
Not every experience ends up exactly like what Maadi was hoping for! Maadi's Doberman experience is just one of the times when she wished her obedient Lab genes had kicked in before the call-of-the-wild Husky genes had a chance to lead the way.
Throughout the book, there are many photographs of the people, animals, terrain, and maps of Egypt to illustrate the tale. These photographs balance the talking dog with reality and give the fiction a very believable, realisic twist. When new words or phrases native to Egypt are introduced in the narrative, Maadi explains their meaning in her conversational tone. The story is packed with facts and I learned a lot about Egypt, but it never felt like I was reading a text book.
Although the book is written for children, probably for the pre-teen, early teen range, I found the writing style and vocabulary to be very engaging for adults. I estimate the vocabulary to be on a sixth to eighth grade reading level or higher. I think that young folks and adults alike, especially those who have an interest in other cultures, will thoroughly enjoy reading Maadi's Adventures in Egypt. This well-written book has been nicely edited with only a very minor punctuation error here and there. It was a pleasure to read. Without any reservation, I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars!
· Sounds like a lovely and memorable book. I hope my children and I get the chance to read it. Congratulations to Bill Wilke for such a beautifully written book. Great review!
· Your review makes this book seem like a very interesting way to learn some things about Egypt! Congratulations to the author, Bill Wilke, for a great idea for a story about Egypt. I like the idea that this book makes it possible to learn some facts about a country in an interesting way, rather than just a list of facts.
· What a neat way to write a story about Egypt! I love this idea. Great job on another review, Ramona! Congrats to Mr. Wilke on getting a 4-star review!
Photos from the book
(With Maadi’s comments)
King Tut's Mask Cairo Museum
"My eyes burst with the splendor. Gold Exploded everywhere, jewelry, vases chariots, large gilded boxes, chests,coffins -- all gold – glittering, dazzling gold. All of a sudden – right in front of me, was the most famous of them all. Tut’s golden funerary mask. The air sucked out of my lungs.—Awesome, absolutely awesome!"
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King Tut’s Tomb
"King Tut’s Tomb, what a sight! Stunning! Four brilliant glittering golden walls, spectacularly paintedwith figures of every color and size, over 1,000 years old surrounding a golden sarcophagus."
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Downtown Cairo over Nile River Bridge
“Traffic is just bumper-to-bumper today.”
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(Maadi –Excerpt from book while returning home along the dunes)
Suddenly, a low growl. My head spun to the left. My blood ran cold. Looking down, silhouetted on top of a large dune next to me, were three of the most ferocious, meanest looking beasts that I had ever seen. The Dobermans! I consider myself pretty tough, but these guys were more than twice my size! I knew that I was no match for one, much less the three of them together. I had become careless, immersed in my thoughts, and had forgotten to heed the send-off warnings of my colleagues. I was in deep trouble. Deep, deep trouble. I frantically sped off to the right into an adjacent village. I came to a street and caught a glimpse of them as I turned the corner. They were right behind me, gaining ground rapidly, too rapidly. I came to an alley and dashed in between the buildings. Every few strides, I glanced back over my shoulder. It was always the same. Each time three sets of the biggest, sharpest, shiniest, white teeth I’ve ever seen, framed in three snarling mouths, with saliva oozing from the corners were drawing ever closer. Unless I got a break soon, I was going to be a big doggie play toy, tossed in the air, and torn apart in several pieces. That thought triggered an adrenaline surge, sling-shoting my body ahead.* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *