Adventure Island Book Seven
The Mystery of the Dinosaur Discovery
Dinosaurs and Deceptions
Stegosaurus, Iguanadon . . .
Which is your
love them all!
I think it's the fact that
dinosaurs are such a mystery that makes them so fascinating. What did they look
like? How did they move? Why did they die out? All we have are a few
tantalizing clues - some fossilized bone heres, a trail of footprints there - to
piece together their story.
But however big a dino-fan
I am, I couldn't sneak any stegosauruses or T-Rexes into the Adventure
Island series. After all, these books are about modern-day kids investigating
crimes. Scott, Jack, Emily and Drift don't have a time machine to go back to the
Jurassic Era or a magic portal to to a parallel world where dinosaurs still
roam the earth (much to Jack's disappointment!).
So, you might be wondering
how come Book Seven is called The Mystery of the Dinosaur Discovery? Well,
the secret is that it's all about the discovery of a dinosaur fossil.
And to make it extra exciting, it's not just a bit of tooth or a toenail, it's almost
a complete skeleton and it looks like a whole new species that's never been
What has Drift found beneath the snow?
Or is it?
It seems someone in
Castle Key is out to prove the fossil is a hoax.
It wouldn't be the first
time that the world has been caught out by a clever fossil hoax. In 1912
scientists presented a prehistoric human skull they had pieced together from
fragments found at a gravel pit at Piltdown in Sussex. 'Piltdown Man' was
claimed to be the evolutionary 'missing link' between apes and humans. It
wasn't until the 1950s that Piltdown Man was proved to be a forgery - made up
of an old human skull, the lower jaw of an orangutan and the fossilized teeth
of a chimp!
Amazingly, the identity of
the forger is still unknown. One of the suspects was a man called Sir Arthur
Conan Doyle. That's a name you might recognize. Five hundred super-brain points
if you remembered that he was the creator of the original Sherlock Holmes books.
And, weirdly enough, Conan
Doyle was associated with another famous hoax story - although this time he was
the one being tricked. Conan Doyle believed in fairies. He believed in them so
much that when Elsie and Frances, two girls from Cottingley near Bradford, took
photographs of fairies in their garden, he published them in a magazine,
vouching that they were genuine.
The Cottingley Fairies
became nearly as famous as Piltdown Man. Years later, when she was an old lady,
Elsie admitted that the pictures were faked by using cardboard cut-outs from a
picture book. But Frances always maintained that they really had seen
fairies and that at least some of the pictures were the real thing.
The first photo of the Cottingley fairies
Do you think that the
fairies in this photograph are real? Remember, this was 1917. Although
photography was quite widely used by this time, digital editing was still a
long way in the future!
PS. My favourite
dinosaur is pachycephalosaurus, by the way!
Question 7: Sir Arthur
Conan Doyle is one of the more famous suspects accused of forging the 'Piltdown
Man'. Which fictional detective is he famous for creating?
Sherlock Holmes (B)
Nancy Drew (R)
For your next clue, visit:
On: Wednesday 30 May