The 39 Clues

AVAILABLE NOW

The Cahills will do whatever it takes to protect their family's most valuable—and dangerous—secrets. But now, after centuries of bloodshed and betrayal, the truth is about to be revealed. The Black Book of Buried Secrets uncovers everything you've ever wanted to know about the Cahill family, including the location of the branch strongholds, the truth about the fire that killed Gideon Cahill, and shocking information about Arthur Cahill's real identity. For a sneak peek, check out the Cahill Branch Facts dashboard below or click on the excerpt to read a story from the book. And be the first to discover all the secrets on October 26th!

Read an excerpt (PDF)

  • TOMAS BRANCH:
    History

    The most famous warriors in history have been Tomas, from Shaka Zulu and his fearless army to the samurai of Japan. But the Tomas don't win battles simply because they're fast and strong. They have a gift for strategy, which is why the branch boasts legendary military leaders like George Washington and the Duke of Wellington, who vanquished Napoleon.

  • TOMAS BRANCH:
    Ivan Kleister

    Ivan Kleister is a champion hockey player. He's a legendary boxer. And he's one of the best extreme skiers on the planet. However, his leadership skills aren't quite as powerful as his terrifying right hook. Although he has no trouble making a split-second decision on the ice or in the air, he's not as confident when it comes to Clue-hunting strategy. Rather than make the wrong decision, sometimes Ivan prefers to make none at all. He's committed to the Tomas cause and is desperate for them to find the Clues, but he's more comfortable arranging a volleyball tournament than he is a worldwide treasure hunt. Yet the classic Tomas in him refuses to admit defeat. Whenever something goes wrong, he looks for someone else to blame.

  • TOMAS BRANCH:
    Urban Climbing/Parkour

    When the Tomas want to break into another branch's stronghold, they don't waste time studying heating system blueprints or arranging elaborate disguises. They simply use their urban climbing skills to scale the building. Tomas can climb anything: monuments, statues, bridges—even skyscrapers! Recently, the branch leadership sent agents to climb the Eiffel Tower to find a Lucian Clue. They made it to the top easily but, unfortunately, the Clue had been temporarily moved to the Statue of Liberty.

    Of course, not every mission goes quite so smoothly. When the Tomas have to make a quick getaway, they use parkour—a series of leaps, jumps, and other acrobatic moves that allows agents to race through urban environments. Parkour experts can even jump over cars, over walls, and across roofs, although special training is required for these highly dangerous stunts.

  • TOMAS BRANCH:
    Spy Sea Lions

    Although the Tomas are amazing athletes, they know that their skills have limits. The most experienced scuba diver is no match for a pair of built-in flippers, supercharged senses, and ridiculously cute whiskers. Tomas in the military use sea lions to detect bombs, deliver equipment, and watch for enemy divers. The US Navy has even trained the animals to attach leg cuffs to intruders and pull them back to their handlers for questioning.

    The Tomas also use spy sea lions for their Clue-hunting operations. Special sea lion agents patrol the waters around important Tomas locations—like the area above the Mariana Trench—making it difficult for rival Cahills to sneak in undetected. They can also be used to spy on the other branches. The Tomas attach underwater cameras to the sea lions' harnesses and then send them to take photos of enemy territories.

  • TOMAS BRANCH:
    Alcatraz Island

    In the 19th century, power in the American West was determined by who could ride the fastest, shoot the straightest, and look the meanest. Naturally, the Tomas ran the show. Their main base of operations in the Wild West was Alcatraz Island, in San Francisco Bay. Originally a military fort and then a federal prison, Alcatraz has always been Tomas owned and operated. The remote island surrounded by chilly, shark-infested waters was also the perfect place to hide a Clue. Before the island's prison was shut down, the Tomas loved to imprison their rivals in "the Rock". The inmates often went mad knowing how frustratingly close they were to a Tomas Clue.

  • JANUS BRANCH:
    Strategy

    The Janus are just as passionate about art as they are about finding the 39 Clues. They believe it makes the world a better place, and that the power of the Clues will allow them to make art the focus of every society on earth.

    Some of the most famous works of art in the world were actually created as part of the hunt for the 39 Clues. The inspiration for Mary Shelley's book Frankenstein came during a meeting of top Janus agents in Switzerland at the beginning of the 19th century, and Shelley even hid a Clue in the text of the novel.

    While the Janus have the reputation for being peaceful dreamers, they can be just as dangerous as the other branches of the Cahill family. Janus leaders throughout history have placed artistic creation above the needs of their people, letting their subjects starve while building lavish palaces and ornate monuments. The Janus are also willing to use the same brutal Clue-hunting methods as their peers—Janus agents use swords as skillfully as they used quill pens.

  • JANUS BRANCH:
    Cora Wizard

    Cora Wizard is a world-famous artist. After becoming the youngest person ever to win the Nobel Prize in Literature, she switched her focus to painting. She's spent the past few years traveling, displaying her work in the most prestigious galleries. But only Cahill insiders know the real reason for Cora's jet-setting—as the head of the Janus branch, she had to visit strongholds and bases to oversee Janus Clue-hunting efforts around the world. Sometimes, Cora's travel plans coincided with her son's tour schedule. At those concerts, Jonah would always scan the VIP section for his mother, but she never came. However, he knows better than to look for her now. After Jonah shared his Clues in the Madrigal stronghold, Cora vowed never to speak to him again.

  • JANUS BRANCH:
    Broderick Wizard

    Broderick was not born into the Janus branch. He only learned about the Cahills and the Clues after he married Cora. Even after seventeen years of marriage, there are secrets Cora refuses to share with her husband—he doesn't have the necessary security clearance. However, as Jonah's manager, Broderick had plenty to keep him busy apart from the Clue hunt. Cora had little interest in their superstar son's dazzling career, so she left it up to Broderick. Touring with Jonah was the only time when Broderick got to make decisions on his own—a rare thing for a non-Janus living with one of the most powerful women on earth. However, everything changed after the Clue hunt. Cora disowned Jonah and, after years of following Cora's lead, Broderick took a stand. His chose his son over his wife.

  • JANUS BRANCH:
    Spy Pigeon

    The Janus creativity allows them to come up with crazy—and very effective—Clue-hunting tools. For centuries, humans have used pigeons to send messages. In World War I, a brave carrier pigeon, Cher Ami, was even awarded the Croix de Guerre medal after delivering a message that saved the lives of almost 200 trapped soldiers. However, the Janus were the first to equip pigeons with cameras to take spy photos of important Clue locations, whether enemy strongholds or their own bases. When the other branches learned that there might be a Clue hidden in Neuschwanstein Castle, the Janus dispatched fleets of spy pigeons to photograph the area and monitor their enemies' movements.

  • JANUS BRANCH:
    Taj Mahal

    Janus Architect Ustad Lahauri designed the Taj Mahal, one of the most famous building in the world, at the request of EmperorShah Jahan in honor of his deceased wife. For centuries, there were rumors that Lahauri hid a Clue inside the Taj Mahal but, in recent years, top Cahill agents discovered that the Clue was actually inside another one of Lahauri's monuments - the Red Ford in Delhi.

  • LUCIAN BRANCH:
    Crest

    The Lucian crest has changed over the years, but its central image has remained the same. The symbol for the Lucian branch has always been a double-headed snake. Like their favorite animal, Lucians value stealth and sneak attacks. Sometimes, victims don't even know they're a target until Lucian poison is seeping through their veins.

  • LUCIAN BRANCH:
    Ching Shih

    The feared pirate Ching Shih embodies Lucian ruthlessness. She was one of the most successful Clue hunters of her time, tracking leads all over east Asia. Ching Shih was infamous for punishing pirates who betrayed her—deserting cost you your ears; thieves were beheaded. Despite her long list of crimes, she negotiated a deal with the Chinese government that allowed her to keep her stolen treasure and continue searching for Clues.

  • LUCIAN BRANCH:
    Gustave Eiffel (1832-1923)

    Architecture is generally an Ekaterina profession. However, Gustave Eiffel combined design genius with a Lucian's cunning ambition. He built structures all over the world that became important Lucian bases.

    Eiffel's most famous works are the Statue of Liberty and the Eiffel Tower. but these monuments have a secret purpose - they were actually designed to hide Lucian clues.

  • LUCIAN BRANCH:
    Poison Rings

    Poison rings have always been a favorite among royal Lucians, or those serving as advisers to kings and queens. One could attend a feast or a ball while carrying a lethal dose of poison—a common practice among Lucians. With their tiny injector needles, poison rings only work when agents can get close to their victims. That's what makes the Lucians so dangerous—they can smile at you one moment and then jab you with a poison ring before you even have a chance to smile back.

  • LUCIAN BRANCH:
    Wall Street

    Lucians don't always use their cunning to take over countries. During the last century, Lucians became incredibly powerful on Wall Street—the financial heart of the United States. There is even a secret Lucian meeting room hidden inside the New York Stock Exchange. Often, before the market opens, Lucian stockbrokers teleconference with their fellow branch members in different parts of the world to come up with a strategy for the day—a plan that will earn billions of dollars for Lucians around the globe.

  • EKATERINA BRANCH:
    Branch Leaders

    Ekaterina leadership is generally passed down within families. The last official branch head was Korean businessman Bae Oh, but he was recently arrested for a decades-old crime—the murder of Gordon Oh, his twin brother. According to Ekat tradition, Gordon's son, Alistair, should take over as branch leader. However, there are rumors that Alistair betrayed the Ekats by sharing his Clues with the other branches. The investigation is ongoing.

  • EKATERINA BRANCH:
    Katherine Cahill

    The Ekaterina founder was the second child of Gideon and Olivia Cahill. Like her father, Katherine grew up fascinated by science. After she left Ireland, she became one of the world's first Egyptologists. She also learned to read ancient hieroglyphics three hundred years before the "first" official translators were even born. However, before she left for Egypt, Katherine made a decision that would shape the course of history. Angry with her favorite brother, Thomas, she stole one of his Clues and departed for faraway lands.

  • EKATERINA BRANCH:
    The Starling Triplets

    Ned, Ted, and Sinead Starling spent their whole lives preparing for the Clue hunt. Even after an explosion at the Franklin Institute left the Starlings gravely injured, they refused to quit and managed to catch up with their competition. After the hunt, the triplets started college. Ted's seeing- eye dog, Flamsteed, became the most popular dorm resident after Sinead trained him to announce the dinner menu. Using his supercharged sense of smell, Flamsteed barks once for pizza, twice for hamburgers, and three times for mystery meat.

  • EKATERINA BRANCH:
    HALO/HAHO

    The Tomas may have invented skydiving, but the Ekats perfected it for Clue-hunting missions. In order to break into rival strongholds, they developed the HALO (High Altitude - Low Opening) and HAHO (High Altitutde - High Opening) methods. Agents brave enough to attempt at HALO jump wait until the last possible moment to open their parachutes. This dangerous move allows Ekats agents to reach such high speeds taht they cannot be detected by radar. In other situations, the HAHO method is best for sneaking into enemy territory. Agents open their chutes early, which allows them to navigate through the air and land in specific locations, like the Tomas base on Alcatraz Island.

  • EKATERINA BRANCH:
    Spy Pennies

    The Ekaterinas have access to technology that the rest of the world can only imagine, such as nearly microscopic cameras and microphones that can be hidden inside a coin. Even the Kabras' surveillance bug scanner can't detect spy pennies, devices that allow the Ekats to monitor some of their most important and dangerous enemies.

  • MADRIGAL BRANCH:
    Crest

    The Madrigals use the Cahill "C" as their symbol in the hope that someday the warring branches of the family will be united once again. When they want to send a message of fear, they use the Madrigal "M". Just the sight of it has been known to send the bravest Clue hunters off screaming.

  • MADRIGAL BRANCH:
    Hope Cahill

    After Amy and Dan were born, their mother, Hope Cahill, started to think differently about the hunt. The dangerous missions that once left her exhilarated now made her anxious. Hope began to worry about what would happen to her children if she and Arthur were killed. Yet at the same time, the hunt grew increasingly urgent. The more Hope learned about the other branches, the more committed she became to keeping the Clues out of their hands. After witnessing Isabel Kabra kill a museum guard in South Africa, Hope came to an agonizing realization—it was more important to make the world safe for her children than to keep herself alive to raise them.

  • MADRIGAL BRANCH:
    Saladin

    Grace's cat, Saladin, might appear to be a spoiled pet, but he's actually an accomplished honorary agent in his own right. Grace trained her Egyptian Mau to sneak into buildings too dangerous for her to enter, like the Lucian stronghold in Moscow. She even developed cat-size surveillance equipment for him to carry on his secret missions. Saladin was happy to help, even if it required him to don scuba gear and swim. No feat is too great as long as there is a reward of red snapper at the end.

  • MADRIGAL BRANCH:
    Easter Island

    In the middle of the twentieth century, the Madrigals built a second stronghold on this Polynesian island famous for its enormous stone statues, or moai. Easter Island is one of the most isolated islands in the world—it's 2,180 miles off the coast of Chile—making it the ideal location for a secret base. The Madrigals built a fake moai to hide the entrance to their underground stronghold. The high-tech surveillance center allows them to track Cahill activity around the world.

  • MADRIGAL BRANCH:
    United Nations

    Over the years, the Madrigal philosophy has expanded. In addition to reuniting the Cahill family, the Madrigals try to promote peace and cooperation among all people. They were responsible for founding the United Nations, an international organization that works to stop wars, provide aid, and uphold justice around the world. The UN headquarters in New York City functions as an unofficial Madrigal stronghold, as does the International Court of Justice in the Netherlands.