4 days until Gordon Korman is at the library!

A delight! What would it be like to be a son of a mobster dating a daughter of an FBI agent? Pretty tough! This clever book is written from the point of view of Vincent, "the son of the mob", who finds the "vending machine business" distasteful and just plain wrong. Vincent is torn between the perks of being in a mob family and his personal need to disassociate from them. There are a few mysteries interwoven in the book and lots of humorous situations. Very entertaining!

 

This was a terrific sequel to "Son of the Mob". Vince and Kendra from book one are headed to California to attend neighboring colleges. Vince is the son of a mobster and Kendra is the daughter of an FBI agent. It works for them! Vince is rooming with Trey who has an uncomfortable relationship with his father, a congressman. Vince & Trey have this in common: how they are pawns in the hands of their fathers. Tommy, Vince's brother, moves in with Vince & Trey claiming he wants to "get out of the life" and try on college for size. Suddenly, Tommy's group vastly grows as more and more members of Vince's family head for CA. Vince is trying to stay one step ahead of everyone but is mostly lacking in control of anything. However, his heart is in the right place. Vince is taking a film class with plans for his future where all the participants are assigned filming projects. Meanwhile, the Congressman, the Mob and the FBI are all converging for some dirty dealings with union bosses. It is suspenseful writing as all of the pieces fall together. (Where did the author learn the politics and vocabulary of the mob?) Kendra and Vince are having a hit or miss relationship because she is starring for a different film in the film class--a musical being directed by an unsavory classmate! This only fuels Vince's considerable frustration with how life has become more confusing since leaving home, not less. Eventually in the film class, a tape accidentally surfaces of a mob incident and Vince is hailed as an artist as it is credited to him. At the conclusion of the book, comically, Vince's father finds this turn of events charming and something to have pride in Vincent for. He cannot wait to screen the film! Yikes!

Son of the Mob in Infosoup: http://search.infosoup.org/iii/encore/record/C__Rb1455887?lang=eng

Son of the Mob/Hollywood Hustle in Infosoup: http://search.infosoup.org/iii/encore/record/C__Rb1527277?lang=eng

Did you know? Gordon's last visit to Seymour was in 1995!

5 days until Gordon Korman is at the library!

Short story from website: “Wimp of Sparta” and was part of compilation, This Family Is Driving Me Crazy. You can read it here:

http://gordonkorman.com/wimp-of-sparta

This short story is a rollicking ride about taking risks and adrenaline rushes. In the end, however, the nugget of truth is about being true to one’s self. Sometimes we need to resist the expectations of others even if/when we are capable of meeting them. It is just not who we are!

Did you know? Swindle was adapted into a movie that aired on "Nickelodeon" in 2013.

6 days until Gordon Korman is at the library!

Capricorn Anderson has been raised on a commune called Garland Farm. When his caregiver, Rain, needs to be hospitalized, Capricorn is taken under the wing of social services and suddenly thrust into middle school. How Capricorn assimilates (or not) makes for an intriguing story. Also, how the other students react to and treat Capricorn as they joust for positions in the social pecking order creates an interesting plot. The fact that the social worker who fosters him had also been raised on Garland Farm gives her the ability to be empathetic and helpful. The fact that Capricorn has been self-reliant, self-sufficient, and resilient for so long almost creates a bubble around him that the usual middle school ridicule and testing cannot penetrate. The book moves along fast with a twist at the end that is perhaps realistic and perhaps a little sad.

This book is available in Infosoup: http://search.infosoup.org/iii/encore/record/C__Rb1652949?lang=eng

Did you know? Gordon Korman is a Beatles fan.

7 days until Gordon Korman is at the library!

Wow, this was a really sophisticated story of intrigue, global threat and hypnotic ability used as a weapon. This is the third in a series and even though I felt that the story could stand alone I would recommend that folks start with Book #1 which is THE HYPNOTISTS and Book #2 which is MEMORY MAZE. I listened to this book. (The reader was Ramon de Ocampo.) It was fast-paced, dramatic , and suspenseful. Jax is a 12 year old boy with the ability to hypnotize/mindbend. The government and military attempt to harness his powers for leverage and world wide domination! This campaign is called Operation Aurora. But "dragonfly" is the word that can break the spell. I enjoyed Jax's reality which included a pledge to avoid the temptation to use his power but "Oops!"he might have to at the end of the book!

This book is available in Infosoup: http://search.infosoup.org/iii/encore/record/C__Rb2055246?lang=eng

Did you know? Gordon Korman has never been hypnotized.

8 days until Gordon Korman is at the library!

Bruno and Boots are roommates at a boarding school until they are separated as a punishment for getting into too much trouble TOGETHER. Each of them moves into a new dorm room with a new roommate. They find this challenging because A) their new roommates are weird and B) they just want to room together again. They hatch a series of hilarious plans to be able to move back in with each other. It turns out that they are surprising heroes toward the end of the book (surprising even themselves) and their wish to be back in Room 306 ("home sweet home") is granted.

Here is a book to tickle your funny bone. Bruno and Boots are back again and this time their aim is a new recreation room at MacDonald Hall. If they can assemble a winning football team they have a donor who will pay for the rec room. Henry (Hank the Tank) Carson is an alum and former Green Bay Packer (!) who has made his fortune selling zucchini sticks. So he underwrites the football team and treats everyone to free zucchini sticks all the time. Unfortunately, no one likes them. Crazy ways emerge to off-load them! Many other eccentric and hilarious characters sprout in this book. Elmer Drimsdale is the school genius and science experimenter who is posing as the quarterback. Suddenly, his personality changes to fit his "star status". Kevin Klapper is the school inspector who never leaves because his addiction to football is ignited. Turns out, he is a very handy coach. Calvin Fihzgart fancies himself "the Beast" in football and where will that get him? Blankenship/"The Blabbermouth" cannot restrain himself from sharing trivia about everyone TO everyone. But the best nonsense of all, that I love (!), is that the real quarterback is Cathy Burton from Mrs. Scrimmage's School for Girls, across the street! (Read the book to find out what role bush hamsters play, yikes!)

These books are available in Infosoup: http://search.infosoup.org/iii/encore/record/C__Rb1826812?lang=eng; http://search.infosoup.org/iii/encore/record/C__Rb1272303?lang=eng

Did you know the three reasons Gordon Korman wrote Zucchini Warriors? a) He wanted to write another Bruno and Boots book; b) He loves football; c) He hates zucchini sticks!