This story involves three juvenile delinquents: Arjay, Terrence and Gecko. The boys are completely different. Arjay’s a peaceful musician who accidentally killed someone; Terrence thinks of himself as a Chicago gangster (and committed a crime worthy of one); Gecko was a kid who got bullied into driving the getaway car for his criminal older brother. Their only similarity is that another ex-deliquent, Douglas Healy, offers them a chance to get out of the system and live with him in New York City. But this is where their troubles really begin.
When cocky Terrence decides to sneak out late at night, the other two try to stop him from ruining all of their chances to put their lives back on track. When Douglas gets in between the boys and is accidentally hurt, the boys must learn to work together and convince everyone they’re being supervised, or else it’s back in the system; and this time they won’t get a second chance.
Gordon Korman fills the book with quirky and real characters who you can’t help loving (and sometimes hating). The good guys have their bad sides and the bullies have their quirks, too. They’re not cookie-cutter characters and actually reflect real people, unlike so many characters in books written for young adults.
Gecko, for example, is a really sweet kid who gives into peer pressure. He’s not the perfect hero. His mistakes makes him believable. But this book isn’t all about character development, though. There’s action, and the moment of truth is fast-paced and exciting.
This book is a page turner (especially towards the end), and kids who usually read the bare minimum will find themselves reading in their free time. This book has something for everyone: humor; well-developed characters; and fast-paced action. A wide variety of readers, from teen issues to action adventure fans, will enjoy Korman’s latest.
Publisher: Hyperion Books, 256 pages
Tags: Gordon Korman