Invisible I (The Amanda Project Series #1)

Invisible I (The Amanda Project Series #1)

4.1 24
by Amanda Valentino
     
 

Amanda Valentino changed everything.

Callie Leary has exactly one thing, and one thing only, in common with Nia Rivera and Hal Bennett: They were each chosen by Amanda to be her guide. When Amanda arrived at Endeavor High, she told Callie she moves around a lot and always picks one person to help her navigate the choppy waters of a new school. Why did

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Overview

Amanda Valentino changed everything.

Callie Leary has exactly one thing, and one thing only, in common with Nia Rivera and Hal Bennett: They were each chosen by Amanda to be her guide. When Amanda arrived at Endeavor High, she told Callie she moves around a lot and always picks one person to help her navigate the choppy waters of a new school. Why did Amanda lie?

Following a course that they suspect Amanda deliberately plotted, Callie, Nia, and Hal piece together some cryptic clues. But they find more questions than answers and quickly realize that before they can figure out what happened to Amanda—the girl who changed their lives—they'll need to solve the most important mystery of all: Who is Amanda Valentino?

Editorial Reviews

E. Lockhart
“Forget sleeping. Once you begin exploring Amanda’s disappearance, you’ll be sucked in and won’t want to do anything but read. Amazing fun.”
The Horn Book
“An entertainingly intricate mystery, enticingly structured with submysteries and textured with emotional tension. Amanda is a tantalizingly enigmatic figure. There’s just enough resolved here to satisfy, and plenty of questions left to keep readers anxiously awaiting the release of the series’ next title.”
Justine Magazine
“An amazingly creative interactive mystery that will draw you in from page one. Secrets, lies, cryptic notes, confusing clues, tattoos and missing persons all contribute to the drama swirling around Amanda as you turn each page. Get addicted to the enigma that is Amanda.”
Publishers Weekly
There are far too many scintillating, hand-clenching facets to this carefully crafted whodunit to count. Doors are purposefully left open and clues expertly planted (in the book's text, artwork—even the endpapers—and on a dedicated Web site readers can explore), all of which will compel readers to pick up the subsequent books in the interactive Amanda Project series. (The books, all appearing under the name Stella Lennon, will be written by various authors, with Melissa Kantor [Girlfriend Material] kicking things off.) In the opener, three unlikely allies—narrator Callie, a member of the exclusive “I-Girls” clique; Nia, the “biggest freak in the ninth grade”–cum–hidden beauty; and Hal, an “uber-cool” artist—are brought together as they attempt to find 15-year-old Amanda, who has disappeared. The story unfolds at just the right pace to build curiosity, but not overwhelm with unanswered questions (Why did Amanda tell Callie, Nia and Hal three separate stories about her past? What's up with the animal totems she gives them?). If there's too much high school social politics at points, the catty backstabbing is unlikely to distract most readers from the mind-bending mystery shrouding Amanda's whereabouts. Ages 12–up. (Sept.)
VOYA - Paula Brehm-Heeger
Amanda Valentino is missing. What could popular Callie, newest member of the "i-girl" clique who rules the school, possibly know about the disappearance of someone as odd as Amanda? As it turns out, Callie knows quite a lot. Torn between her desire to unravel the mystery surrounding Amanda's disappearance and her need avoid associating with outsiders in order to maintain her new incrowd status, Callie covertly meets with lessthan- cool classmates Nia and Hal, who are equally interested in Amanda's whereabouts for their own reasons. Although the trail of cryptic clues left by Amanda does little to help the trio locate their missing friend, it leads Callie to confront a horrible, possibly life-destroying secret that she has been keeping for months. Is Amanda's disappearance and her friends' discovery that Amanda had lied to them about her background just her way of forcing Callie to face the truth or is Amanda mixed up in something much deeper and more dangerous than any of them could imagine? Told in alternating real-time and flashback sequences, this story is loaded with more plot twists and drama than any high schooler should have to handle. It is a genuine mystery involving one strange clue followed by another with enough suspense woven into the tale to keep the reader engaged. Lennon is clearly setting up a series, making the story long on background and explanation and sometimes short on action, but the characters are appealing. And you cannot help but leave this first installment with a strong need to find out just who is Amanda Valentino and what has happened to her? A Web site that is linked to the series, The Amanda Project, invites readers to become part of the search for forthe missing teen (http://www.amandaproject. com). Reviewer: Paula Brehm-Heeger
School Library Journal
Gr 7–10—Freshman Callie Leary wishes that her mother hadn't mysteriously disappeared, that her family still had money, and that her father wasn't drinking. So far she has kept the state of her family a secret, but it's becoming more difficult. Then one morning Callie is called to the vice principal's office with two other students, Hal and Nia. It seems that their classmate, Amanda Valentino, painted the vice principal's car with graffiti, left clues on their lockers, and then disappeared. Unsure of the connection between Amanda and themselves, they decide to follow the clues and solve her disappearance. But as they dig deeper, they find that Amanda wasn't exactly truthful about her life and finding her will not be easy. Billed as the first in a series of eight, this is a satisfying mystery with a few minor flaws. Callie is likable, and her emotions are genuine as she stumbles to find her way after her family falls apart. However, her realization that her friends are shallow and that she prefers spending time with Hal and Nia is too predictable. But, it's the many subplots and unanswered questions that will either leave readers annoyed or wanting more. Those who can put aside these minor irritations will find the book a page-turner, and with a Web site tie-in, it should prove pretty popular.—Kelley Siegrist, Farmington Community Library, MI
Kirkus Reviews
According to popular Callie, Amanda Valentino was a quirky math genius who lived in a pretty, Victorian house. When Amanda disappears, however, Callie learns that Amanda was a friend to two estranged classmates, Nia and Hal, both of whom believe completely different things about her, and the three work together to discover what's happened. This illustrated series opener invites readers to interact with the text and solve the mystery along with Callie, while the related website, amandaproject.com, provides subtle and not-so-subtle encouragement for readers to spend time and money with its business partners (one quiz reveals what stores participants might be, among other things). The author-Melissa Kantor, one of several writers using the Stella Lennon nom de plume-works in some side plots about Callie's missing mother and a terrible secret concerning a disfigured classmate. The ending has no resolutions for any of the story lines, which bodes well for the series but not for frustrated readers who have sat through 300 pages to get there-but they can play at the website, right? A baldly predatory attempt to get into teens' wallets. (Mystery. 14 & up)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061742125
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
09/22/2009
Series:
Amanda Project Series, #1
Pages:
292
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

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