Continue the Thrilling Global Journey With ‘Explorer Academy: The Double Helix’

A fully packed high-tech adventure that offers both cool, educational facts about the planet and a diverse cast of characters. 

Kirkus Reviews,

Reviewed by More Than Half a Million Influential Parent Bloggers and Moms!

photo of Explorer Academy: The Double Helix

This fall, National Geographic dives deeper into the beloved Explorer Academy fiction series with a third action-packed book, "Explorer Academy: The Double Helix."

The journey continues with central character Cruz Coronado and his fellow explorers as they set sail on all-new exotic expeditions aboard the Academy flagship, Orion, using the latest science and groundbreaking technology.

The stakes are even higher in this third journey as Cruz and his classmates continue their ongoing quest to find his mother’s revolutionary "secret formula" … and now, his missing father. The clock begins to tick, and the action intensifies as his 13th birthday draws near … a milestone that will change his life forever.

Inspired by the pioneering work of real-life space archaeologist Sarah Parcak, Cruz and his classmates use high-tech images from satellites to locate the buried sites of ancient civilizations and to help combat the real problem of artifact looting. “The Truth Behind the Fiction” section of the book explains how Parcak uses infrared light, UV light and microwaves to reveal pyramids, temples and even entire cities buried beneath layers of forest and soil. The fact-based fiction concept of "Explorer Academy" is one of the elements that sets this series apart from other middle-grade series, and allows kids to dig deeper into the fascinating, cutting-edge research, science and technology of real National Geographic Explorers.

Lauded as a "best new book" (Red Tricycle, 2019) and "especially cool" (, 2019), "Explorer Academy: The Double Helix" by Trudi Trueit (National Geographic Kids; Sept. 3, 2019; IBSN: 978-1-4263-3458-0; US .99/CAN .99; Hardcover; 216 pages) will enthrall curious readers as the mysteries that have been following Cruz and his classmates continue to unfold at each exciting turn of the page.

As Foreword Review exclaimed, the action-packed series is "fast-moving and emotional" and "an adventure that will stimulate the minds of young readers." Readers will be on the edge of their seats as the electrifying plot thickens for our young explorers.

"Explorer Academy: The Double Helix" is the third book published under the National Geographic Kids Books fiction imprint, Under the Stars. A companion code-breaking activity book, "Explorer Academy Ultimate Activity Challenge," is scheduled for publication in November 2019. This amazing activity book will prompt kids to take part in the action by cracking codes, crushing quizzes and piecing together puzzles. An included personality quiz will also match readers with a member of Team Cousteau! For more adventures with Cruz and his fellow explorers, fans can head to to watch the "Explorer Academy" animated series “Brain Freeze,” play Explorer Academy-inspired games, find the latest updates on "The Double Helix" and more!


National Geographic Explorers will visit 10 U.S. cities and selected international sites to invite kids into the "Explorer Academy" experience using stories of their own work and inspiration, videos and photographs, an Academy acceptance certificate and pin, and the opportunity to get an autographed book and exploration map poster.

Contact information below for more details.

About the Contributors: Author Trudi Trueit is a gifted storyteller for middle-grade audiences. She has written more than 100 books, both fiction and nonfiction, for young readers, including "The Sister Solution," "Stealing Popular" and the "Secrets of a Lab Rat" series. Trueit lives In Everett, Washington.

Interior illustrator Scott Plumbe is an award-winning illustrator, designer and fine artist whose work has appeared in books, magazines, games, interpretive centers and more. When not traveling the world, he lives In Vancouver, Canada.

Cover illustrator Antonio Javier Caparo is an illustrator, graphic designer and graphic novel artist whose work regularly appears in magazines and books in the U.S, Europe and South America. Born in Cuba, Caparo currently lives In Montreal, Canada.

Dr. Gareth Moore is the code master for the "Explorer Academy" franchise and author of over 100 bestselling international puzzle and brain-training titles. He lives In London, England, with his wife and son. Find him online at

About the Book:

  • Title: "Explorer Academy: The Double Helix"
  • Author: Trudi Trueit
  • Publisher: National Geographic
  • Pub Date: September 2019
  • Ages: 8-12 years
  • Price: US .99/CAN .99
  • ISBN: 978-1-4263-3458-0
  • Pages: 216
  • Format: Hardcover

National Geographic Partners LLC (NGP), a joint venture between The Walt Disney Company and National Geographic Society, is committed to bringing the world premium science, adventure and exploration content across an unrivaled portfolio of media assets. NGP combines the global National Geographic television channels (National Geographic Channel, Nat Geo WILD, Nat Geo MUNDO, Nat Geo PEOPLE) with National Geographic’s media and consumer-oriented assets, including National Geographic magazines; National Geographic studios; related digital and social media platforms; books; maps; children’s media; and ancillary activities that include travel, global experiences and events, archival sales, licensing and e-commerce businesses. Furthering knowledge and understanding of our world has been the core purpose of National Geographic for 131 years, and now we are committed to going deeper, pushing boundaries, going further for our consumers … and reaching millions of people around the world in 172 countries and 43 languages every month as we do it. NGP returns 27 percent of our proceeds to the nonprofit National Geographic Society to fund work in the areas of science, exploration, conservation and education. For more information visit or, or find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Pinterest.


For more information about this book or others from National Geographic, please contact Christie Damato at, 201-222-9118, ext. 27, or Kelly Forsythe at, 202-912-6720.