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Roberta Ritter hopes to be a journalist one day, but for now she's stuck working at her family's arcade in a dilapidated shopping mall. From her vantage point behind the counter, she sees all the goings-on at the mall--and some things she sees are disturbing. Racism, dirty politics, and drugs are all part of the scene. Roberta doesn't like it, but she's just a fifteen-year-old--so what can she do? Roberta is surprised to find out just how much power she does have. To hone her journalistic skills, she begins to investigate hate crimes at the mall. In the process, she uncovers some shocking information concerning her own mother's death. And as she learns to stand up for herself and the truth, Roberta becomes the kind of person who makes things happen--a crusader.
Martin Conway comes from a family filled with heroes and disgraces. His grandfather was a statesman who worked at the US Embassy in London during WWII. His father is an alcoholic who left his family. His sister is an overachieving Ivy League graduate. And Martin? Martin is stuck in between--floundering. But during the summer after 7th grade, Martin meets a boy who will change his life forever. Jimmy Harker appears one night with a deceptively simple question: Will you help? Where did this boy come from, with his strange accent and urgent request? Is he a dream? It's the most vivid dream Martin's ever had. And he meets Jimmy again and again--but how can his dreams be set in London during the Blitz? How can he see his own grandather, standing outside the Embassy? How can he wake up with a head full of people and facts and events that he certainly didn't know when he went to sleep--but which turn out to be verifiably real? The people and the scenes Martin witnesses have a profound effect on him. They become almost more real to him than his waking companions. And he begins to believe that maybe he can help Jimmy. Or maybe that he must help Jimmy, precisely because all logic and reason argue against it. This is a truly remarkable and deeply affecting novel about fathers and sons, heroes and scapegoats. About finding a way to live with faith and honor and integrity. And about having an answer to the question: What did you do to help? From the Hardcover edition.
It's 2001 and zombies have taken over Tom's town. Meth zombies. The drug rips through Blackwater, PA, with a ferocity and a velocity that overwhelms everyone.It starts small, with petty thefts of cleaning supplies and Sudafed from the supermarket where Tom works. But by year's end there will be ruined, hollow people on every street corner. Meth will unmake the lives of friends and teachers and parents. It will fill the prisons, and the morgues.Tom's always been focused on getting out of his depressing coal mining town, on planning his escape to a college somewhere sunny and far away. But as bits of his childhood erode around him, he finds it's not so easy to let go. With the selfless heroism of the passengers on United Flight 93 that crashed nearby fresh in his mind and in his heart, Tom begins to see some reasons to stay, to see that even lost causes can be worth fighting for. Edward Bloor has created a searing portrait of a place and a family and a boy who survive a harrowing plague year, and become stronger than before.From the Hardcover edition.
George and Kate are promised the finest education when they transfer to the Whittaker Magnet School. It boasts the highest test scores in the nation. But at what price? Their school's curriculum is focused on beating standardized tests; classes are held in dreary, windowless rooms; and students are force-fed noxious protein shakes to improve their test performance. Worst of all, there seems to be a demon loose in the building--one whose murderous work has only just begun.A bitterly funny satire about the state of modern education from the author of Tangerine and Crusader. Includes a reader's guide and an author's note.
BY 2035 THE RICH have gotten richer, the poor have gotten poorer, and kidnapping has become a major growth industry in the United States. The children of privilege live in secure, gated communities and are escorted to and from school by armed guards. But the security around Charity Meyers has broken down. On New Year's morning, she wakes and finds herself alone, strapped to a stretcher, in an ambulance that's not moving. She is amazingly calm - kids in her neighborhood have been well trained in kidnapping protocol. If this were a normal kidnapping, Charity would be fine. But as the hours of her imprisonment tick by, Charity realizes there is nothing normal about what's going on here. No training could prepare her for what her kidnappers really want . . . and worse, for who they turn out to be. From the Hardcover edition.
Paul Fischer is not excited about moving to Florida with his family. And he is not happy about living the "Erik Fisher football dream" like his father is. Paul tries to sign up to play soccer at his new middle school but because of his Vision impairment is denied. But when a sink hole opens up beneath his school, he is given a new chance at Tangerine Middle School where be becomes a substitute but still can take pride in being a War Eagle. In the meantime, things in their new housing development are becoming difficult. Home owners complain about insects, robberies, a muck fire that will not go out, and the death of two people in the town. One by accident, he was being struck by lightning and another under shady circumstances. Paul sees things going on that his mom and dad are blind or or don't want to see. Can he get up the courage to tell the truth the whole truth and nothing but the truth, even if it will make his life at home very difficult? Great story for anyone interested in the underdog.
Though legally blind, Paul Fisher can see what others cannot. He can see that his parents' constant praise of his brother, Erik, the football star, is to cover up something that is terribly wrong. But no one listens to Paul--until his family moves to Tangerine. In this Florida town, weird is normal: Lightning strikes at the same time every day, a sinkhole swallows a local school, and Paul the geek finds himself adopted into the toughest group around: the soccer team at his middle school. Maybe this new start in Tangerine will help Paul finally see the truth about his past--and will give him the courage to face up to his terrifying older brother. Includes a reader's guide and an afterword by the author.
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