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Winner of the 2013 Edgar Award for Best Juvenile
Posted October 31, 2012
I loved The Big Splash and was so excited to read this one!
This book opens with a femme fatale. Right on the first page. One of the most beautiful girls in the school leaning against Matt's locker. Just as if she was walking into a private eye's office. Perfect start to this story!
There is also a "bar" where the middle school kids can go to drown their sorrows or celebrate their victories--they drink root beer and cream soda. When Matt describes the bar he lets us know there are "only two rules: no fighting and no fighting." Again, pitch perfect.
And then there is a set of creepy twins who peddle "designer Pixie Stix." The kind that cheerleaders use right before a game and many a middle schooler is addicted to the sugar high.
We've also got a picked on nerd who rises to the top of the MS heirarchy by controlling the candy flow, stolen tests answers and gambling and who has a ruthless way of getting rid of people who cross him--he sends them to the Outs. (This is described in the first book in detail)
I love that every kid has a backstory, some of them hard luck.
There is also a squirt gun shoot out in the school hallway.
I adored Max's description of school, "It was the main source of thrills and dread in every student's life. We never wanted to be there, but we didn't want to not be there and miss something."
The awesomeness of this book and this author explodes out of every page. I just cannot recommend it enough. If you have never read The Big Splash, start there. You will not want the fun to end!
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Posted January 27, 2013