Independence Hall (I,Q Series #1)by Roland Smith
Thirteen-year-old Quest (Q) isn't sure he's ready for a new family. For a long time it's just been him and his mom, Blaze. But everything changes when Blaze falls in love with Roger and they start a new rock band called Match. Now they're married, have a hit record, and Match is going out on a year-long driving tour across the country. Q, along with new stepsister… See more details below
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Thirteen-year-old Quest (Q) isn't sure he's ready for a new family. For a long time it's just been him and his mom, Blaze. But everything changes when Blaze falls in love with Roger and they start a new rock band called Match. Now they're married, have a hit record, and Match is going out on a year-long driving tour across the country. Q, along with new stepsister Angela, will take a year off from school and travel with the band. For now, home will be a luxury motor coach and homework will be a Web site diary of their travels. Perfect-Q can practice his magic tricks and Angela can read her spy novels. What can go wrong? As Q and Angela settle into their new life and new relationship as siblings, they start to notice that certain coincidences don't seem coincidental. For example, how does a band roadie named Boone find them in the middle of a desert where their coach just happens to break down? Why does a man from their parents' wedding keep showing up in the same cities they stop at? When they reach Philadelphia, Q and Angela realize this tour is definitely not the trip their parents had planned and that the "City of Brotherly Love" is full of mysteries and secrets that could threaten their new life together. In addition to his action adventure books, Roland is the author of many award-winning books for children including Journey of the Red Wolf; The Captain's Dog: My Journey with the Lewis and Clark Tribe; and Thunder Cave, which was a 1996 Notable Children's Trade Book in the field of Social Studies. His books with Sleeping Bear Press include W is for Waves: An Ocean Alphabet; Z is for Zookeeper: A Zoo Alphabet; and N is for our Nation's Capital: A Washington, DC Alphabet. Roland lives near Portland, Oregon.
When Quest (Q for short) Munoz's songwriting mom marries rock star Roger Tucker, he and new stepsister Angela join the sensational duo on the road for a national concert tour. Life on the bus goes from boring to bedlam as an old roadie named Boone and his dog, Croc, come aboard, and Dirk Peski, an appropriately named paparazzo, stalks their every move. Boone's preoccupation with the teens' safety and whereabouts and Angela's suspicions about being followed lead her to tell Q about her dead mother's connection to the Secret Service. Alternating chapters of italicized dialogue between a mystery man named Eban Lavi and an international cast of shady characters alert readers that this parallel action will somehow impact Q and Angela when they reach Philadelphia, the city where Angela's mother was killed in the line of duty. Speculation that she may have survived and become a terrorist fuels Angela's determination to find the truth. The pair uses natural tech savvy and Q's magician tricks to elude their followers and comb the city for clues. Preoccupied adults and bumbling spies provide a convenient plot contrivance for the sleuthing teens, but sheer numbers of extraneous characters muddle the story. The best-developed character, Boone, steals the show as the paternal, James Bond-loving intelligence officer whose crime-solving dog is a sidekick. Action lovers will find just enough substance to keep them coming back for future episodes.-Vicki Reutter, Cazenovia High School, NY
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