Jump back into action in a new Explorer Academy book series from National Geographic

If your Scout has read one of National Geographic’s Explorer Academy books or enjoyed an excerpt from the series in Scout Life, then he or she has followed 12-year-old Cruz Coronado’s journey of exploration and adventure at the prestigious Explorer Academy.

“Explorer Academy is a fiction series inspired by the real explorers of National Geographic, featuring an international cast of middle-grade students,” author Trudi Trueit says. “The kids travel the world on a ship, learning, exploring and undertaking daring missions to help preserve and protect our planet.”

As Trueit wrapped up Cruz’s story arc in the seventh book of the series, she felt there was much more to tell – more gadgets, more skills, more adventures. Enter Explorer Academy Vela – a new series taking readers into year two of Explorer Academy. This time, the books shift to explorer Sailor York, one of Cruz’s best friends.

Sailor is an incredible explorer and loyal friend, but she has a few surprises for her fellow explorers in the first book, Explorer Academy Vela: The Sailor Cipher.

The series

We introduced you to the Explorer Academy series several years ago when the first book, The Nebula Secret, came out. Since then, more action-packed books have been released. You can find all the titles on Amazon and wherever books are sold.

The series appeals to youth, especially middle-grade readers, who want fun, well-written fiction that is also rooted in real-world facts. The new Vela series takes an exciting twist with a bit of the fantastic mixed into the narrative.

“I tend to gravitate toward writing realistic fiction where I get to research and include nonfiction elements and while I certainly did that here, The Sailor Cipher contains a bit of the remarkable, too,” Trueit says. “I hope that readers who like science, exploration, fantasy, strong characters or all of the above will find something to connect with in the Vela series.”

When Trueit first developed the Explorer Academy series, she envisioned the characters in a “Scouts on the move”-type school. Explorer Academy students would learn about their world, spending a lot of time hiking, camping, using survival skills and teamwork – just as Scouts do.

“Many of the traits that Scouts strive to uphold are the same characteristics I try to instill in the fictional students of the academy,” she says. “I think a Scout would fit right in at Explorer Academy.”

Get it and explore

You can preorder The Sailor Cipher ($10.99 paperback, $7.99 on Kindle) on Amazon, and it will ship out to you on April 23.

This first book in the Explorer Academy Vela series follows Sailor York and the recruits of Explorer Academy as they work to uncover an animal-smuggling ring, rescue a missing sister, participate in pulse-pounding expeditions … and try to get their homework done on time.

On National Geographic’s website, you can find exclusive Explorer Academy games and videos. The “Truth Behind” section online draws readers deeper into nonfiction topics, including profiles of real National Geographic Explorers who helped to inspire the series. The site also features educational resources that serve as excellent teaching aides and activity ideas.

Your Scouts can read an exclusive interview with Trueit in the April issue of Scout Life magazine. You can subscribe to Scout Life for more fun stories, comics and jokes.


About Michael Freeman 445 Articles
Michael Freeman, an Eagle Scout, is an associate editor of Scout Life and Scouting magazines.