Adventure Island Book Three

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The Mystery of the Hidden Gold by Helen Moss

X Marks The Spot:


The Mystery of the Hidden Gold is all about . . . well, a mystery involving - you guessed it - some hidden gold! But this time, the mission for Scott, Jack, Emily and Drift is not to find out who’s stolen the treasure, but where it is in the first place. The friends find an old treasure map while they’re playing hide-and-seek in the lighthouse during a storm. But this is no ordinary treasure map with a big red X to mark the spot. That would be far too easy, wouldn’t it? The directions are all in code. And then, just when the friends are starting to crack that code, someone steals the map!

I know what you’re thinking. An old treasure map, hidden gold . . . this story must be about pirates. Wrong! There’s no Captain Jack Sparrow or Blackbeard here. Only a British soldier returning from the Boer Wars . . .

Unless you’re a serious history expert you probably won’t have heard of the Boer Wars (six million super-brain points if you know they were in South Africa a little over a hundred years ago, between the British and the descendants of the Dutch settlers there, who were called the Boers.)

Scott thinks he knows where the gold is hidden:


But what you might know is that there are loads of diamond and gold mines in South Africa. At the end of the wars, the Boers realized the British were going to capture their capital city, so they gathered up as much of the country’s gold as they could (A LOT! Remember those gold mines!) so that the British couldn’t get their hands on it. In all the confusion it seems a lot of the gold went missing. Legend has it that huge caches of gold still lie buried in the bush in South Africa, waiting to be found.

I don’t know whether those stories are true, but that’s what gave me the idea of a British soldier finding some of the gold and bringing it home with him.

I’ve always dreamed of finding an old journal or treasure map tucked away in a cellar or attic, but so far all I’ve only found odd socks, pieces of lego and spider’s webs! So it was really good fun to write about Jack, Scott, Emily and Drift finding their fabulous map. I could just imagine how excited they would be as they pored over it trying to work out the clues.

The Mystery of the Hidden Gold was one of Drift’s favourite investigations too. He loved sniffing out the treasure map and then the gold itself. Whenever I take my dogs for a walk they spend most of their time digging. Are they looking for rabbits or are they searching for buried treasure just like Drift? They’ve not found any yet (they’ve not found any rabbits either!). But maybe one day! How about you? What would you do if you found a treasure map?

Any hidden gold under here?:



Question 3: Legend has it that huge caches of gold still lies buried in South Africa. During which war was it hidden?

The Second World War (B)
The Boer War (N)

On: Thursday 24 May