The Sixty-eight Rooms

The Sixty-eight Rooms

Paperback - 2010
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Ruthie thinks nothing exciting will ever happen to her until her sixth-grade class visits the Art Institute of Chicago, where she and her best friend Jack discover a magic key that shrinks them to the size of gerbils and allows them to explore the Thorne Rooms--the collection of sixty-eight miniature rooms from various time periods and places--and discover their secrets.
Publisher: New York : Random House, c2010.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780375857102
Characteristics: 274 p. : ill. ; 22 cm.
Additional Contributors: Call, Greg - Illustrator
Alternative Title: 68 rooms


Featured Blogs and Events

Now Is the Time: A Wrinkle in Time Readalikes

A Wrinkle in Time, published in 1962 and winner of the 1963 Newbery Medal, has been on many schools' required reading lists and library booklists since its release. Personally, I missed reading this in grade school—fortunately, I picked it up as an adult and was taken with this timeless story of intrigue and adventure through time and space. I’m glad I read it because now I'm ready for release… (more)

Chicago’s Many Museums: Books for Kids

One of my favorite things about Chicago is all the museums. If you feel the same way, pick up one of these books that feature Chicago museums! Want a picture book that’ll make you go “aww”?  Pup 681 tells the true story of Luna, a rescued sea otter pup who now lives at the Shedd Aquarium. I'm sure you've heard of SUE, the Field Museum's famous T. rex. But do you know about Sue Hendrickson, who… (more)

View All Staff Blog Posts »

From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Jul 28, 2016

This book and it's whole series is one of my new found favorites. This book was a very entertaining story that has real historical facts tied into it. The main characters Ruthie and Jack go to an art institute and find a key in the back room that allows them to shrink and go into miniature rooms. They find out that those miniature rooms are gateways to the past and they meet and help people from different time periods, like a girl from the french revolution; with their problems. This book was very fun to read. I really enjoyed the book, even though it lacked action unlike most of my other favorite series'.

foreverlove123 Sep 07, 2014

The book is very great and explain lot of detail of the story.

Aug 06, 2014

This book has a great concept and likeable characters, but it was so slow moving I finally had to give up reading to get to the adventure part of the story. Kids like things to happen pretty quickly in books. In this book the beginning chapters are taken up with background information, a field trip and finding a key. Then when the main character finds out the key will shrink only her for some mysterious reason, all she does is look through room after room in the dollhouse.
I love the idea of art in literature, but to keep readers' attention, I feel there needs to be more up front action. This is the first book in a series. I have not read the others so I do not know if the adventure gets better in the books that follow.

Nov 24, 2013

SUCh a great idea. Intreging but good. A quick read for older readers

olson_ys Feb 20, 2012

If you are a girl, chances are that you once played with a dollhouse. And if you did, chances are you sometimes imagined what it would be like to live inside that dollhouse. For sixth grader Ruthie Stewart the dollhouse of her imagination isn’t just a toy she used to play with. Instead, Ruthie becomes fascinated with the elaborate Thorne Rooms at the Art Institute of Chicago. This real exhibit at the museum consists of sixty-eight meticulously decorated miniature rooms representing different styles and cultures throughout history. Ruthie sees them for the first time when her class goes to the Art Institute for a field trip. Instantly transfixed by the rooms, she wonders when she’ll get to come back to the museum to see them again. She doesn’t have to wonder long. Jack, Ruthie’s best friend, stumbles across a mysterious key on the museum floor and soon the two are hatching a plan to return the next day and find out what it opens. What neither friend plans for, though, is the key’s magic ability to shrink Ruthie to the exact size necessary for her to wander through the miniature rooms. Deciding that the best way to fully explore the rooms is after the museum closes, they decide to sneak in and spend the night. This is just the beginning of their adventure as they attempt to figure out how the key works and who else has explored the rooms before them. Part mystery, part adventure, and part magic this book is for anyone who has ever seen the Thorne Rooms or who always just wanted to know what it would be like to “disappear” to another time and place.

Aug 07, 2011

Sixty-eight rooms was a very interesting and cool book!!

I had never heard of the thorne rooms before (the main setting of the book) and got veey interested in them.
I looked them up on google images and was amazed at their beauty and the sense of....magic i felt when looking at them and reading about them.

It was overall a great book that i recommend!!!


Add Age Suitability
foreverlove123 Sep 07, 2014

foreverlove123 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

Aug 06, 2014

mmcbeth29 thinks this title is suitable for 9 years and over

Aug 07, 2011

bookaholic007 thinks this title is suitable for All Ages


Add a Summary
Aug 07, 2011

Ruthie, the main charactyer has been aiting for something interesting and out of the ordinary to happen to her all her life.
Then one day, the day her class is going on a field trip to the Chicago art institutte she feels like SOMETHING exciting is going to happen to her.......and something definatly does.

What would you do if you found a key that could shrink you down to 5 inches tall, small enough to fit inside the magical, mysterious Thorne rooms.
And what if, while you were exploring those wonderous rooms you found things, things you didn't think you'd find...magical things!

Sixty-eight rooms is a really good book that makes you wonder and want to believe in magic.
I recommend it to everyone!


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at CPL

To Top