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Children's LiteratureAlex Rider has just survived a sniper's bullet. Hospitalized, most teens would be content to concentrate on healing, but when Alex witnesses a murder and knows that a kidnapping is imminent, he swings into action—bandages not withstanding. Successful in thwarting the abduction, Alex immediately becomes the victim. Heart-stopping action follows, and eventually the young hero evades the killers and is rewarded by being swept away to a mysterious billionaire's estate for a time of rest and relaxation as a reward for saving the billionaire's son's life. However, even on a tropical island, trouble follows. Soon, the young orphan is, once again, the only hope of M16 and this time the CIA as well. Alex is a believable hero; his methods of escape are all possible, although hair-raising. As with each of the previous titles in the series, readers are propelled headlong into the action and love every minute of the ride. One succinct quote from the book sums up the young Englishman's status this way: "Alex Rider is the nearest thing the Brits have to a lethal weapon." This title is part of the "Alex Rider" series. Don't miss it. 2006, Philomel Books/Penguin, Ages 12 to 18.