2003 Newbery Medal Honor Book
Synopses & Reviews
Clandestine e-mail exchanges, secret trips, fake press releases, and a tree-house standoff are among the clever stunts and pranks the kid heroes pull in this exciting ecological adventure.
“Sibley Carter is a moron and a world-class jerk,” reads Julian Carter-Li in an angry e-mail message meant for his greedy, high-powered uncle. The fateful message sets him on the course to stop an environmental crime! His uncle's company plans to cut down some of the oldest California redwood trees, and it's up to Julian and a ragtag group of friends to figure out a way to stop them. This thrilling, thoughtful debut novel shows the power of determined individuals, no matter what their age, to stand up to wrongdoing.
John and Patricia Beatty Award
(California Library Association)
National Green Earth Book Award
National Outdoor Book Award honorable mention
Carol D. Reiser Book Award
“Fast paced and full of fun . . . Reminds readers that everyone, no matter how large or small, can take action on issues that are important to them.” —School Library Journal
“One of the finest children's novels of the year . . . A true emotional journey full of adventure, friendship, complex morality, trust, lies, and discovery.” —A Fuse #8 Production
"Characteristically quirky characters and comic twists will surely gain the author new fans, though their attention may wander during his narrative's intermittently protracted focus on several adults....[S]everal suspenseful scenes build to the denouement involving the sitcom-like unraveling of a muckity-muck....These, along with dollops of humor, help make the novel quite a hoot indeed." Publishers Weekly
"This is Schmidt's best novel yetand#8212;darker than The Wednesday Wars and written with more restraint, but with the same expert attention to voice, character and big ideas."and#8212;Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"Reproductions of Audubon plates introduce each chapter in this stealthily powerful, unexpectedly affirming story of discovering and rescuing oneand#8217;s best self, despite family pressure to do otherwise."and#8212;Booklist, starred review
"Readers will miss Doug and his world when theyand#8217;re done, and will feel richer for having experienced his engaging, tough, and endearing story."and#8212;School Library Journal, starred review
"The book is exceptionally well written. Schmidt creates characters that will remain with the reader long after the book is done. Dougand#8217;s voice is unforgettable as he tries to help and protect his mom. . . .While there is much stacked against him, he is a character filled with hope that the reader cannot help but root for. Push this one on readers; they will not be sorry. . . .Schmidt writes a journal-type story with a sharp attention to detail, patterns in the story line, and an unexpected twist at the end."and#8211;VOYA
A National Book Award Nominee
Roy, who is new to his small Florida community, becomes involved in another boy's attempt to save a colony of burrowing owls from a proposed construction site.
Unfortunately, Roys first acquaintance in Florida is Dana Matherson, a well-known bully. Then again, if Dana hadnt been sinking his thumbs into Roys temples and mashing his face against the school-bus window, Roy might never have spotted the running boy. And the running boy is intriguing: he was running away from the school bus, carried no books, and-heres the odd part-wore no shoes. Sensing a mystery, Roy sets himself on the boys trail. The chase introduces him to potty-trained alligators, a fake-fart champion, some burrowing owls, a renegade eco-avenger, and several extremely poisonous snakes with unnaturally sparkling tails.
Roy has most definitely arrived in Carl Hiaasens Florida.
New to Florida, Roy spots the running boy--running away from the school bus, carrying no books and wearing no shoes. Sensing a mystery, Roy sets himself on the boy's trail, which leads him to potty-trained alligators, a fake-fart champion, and a renegade eco-avenger.
The town of Marysville, in upstate New York, where Doug and his family have moved , has six blocks of houses as tiny and beat up as theirs, eighteen houses with flags outside, and one library that, as Doug discovers, is open only on Saturday. On the cool, marbled second floor of the library, he finds a table with a glass case under which there is a huge book opened to a painting of a bird. It is the most terrifying and beautiful picture he has ever seen. It is Audubons Arctic Tern. He imagines drawing it in the air with his fingers. Also at the library Doug meets smart Lil Spicer, whose father owns a deli and who offers Doug a job as a delivery boy. And so begins Dougs Saturday routine: He learns from the librarian, Mr. Powell, about the principles of Audubons art, but some of the plates are mysteriously missing, and Doug vows to make the book whole again. At school, Doug runs into trouble with his teachers, especially the So-Called Gym teacher, which earns him a number of after school detentions. At home, his father, a stern man with quick hands, often brings the unsavory Ernie Eco to dinner, his older brother, Christopher, is accused of stealing, and his oldest brother, Lucas, returns from Vietnam with a bandage covering his burned eyes and in a wheelchair because he has lost his legs. Gary Schmidt interweaves multiple themes of loss and recovery, art and inventiveness, truth and lies in a story teaming with distinctive, unusual characters and invaluable lessons about love, creativity, and survival.
2011 National Book Award Finalist As a fourteen-year-old who just moved to a new town, with no friends and a louse for an older brother, Doug Swieteck has all the stats stacked against him. So begins a coming-of-age masterwork full of equal parts comedy and tragedy from Newbery Honor winner Gary D. Schmidt. As Doug struggles to be more than the and#8220;skinny thugand#8221; that his teachers and the police think him to be, he finds an unlikely ally in Lil Spicerand#8212;a fiery young lady who and#8220;smelled like daisies would smell if they were growing in a big field under a clearing sky after a rain.and#8221; In Lil, Doug finds the strength to endure an abusive father, the suspicions of a whole town, and the return of his oldest brother, forever scarred, from Vietnam. Together, they find a safe haven in the local library, inspiration in learning about the plates of John James Audubonand#8217;s birds, and a hilarious adventure on a Broadway stage. In this stunning novel, Schmidt expertly weaves multiple themes of loss and recovery in a story teeming with distinctive, unusual characters and invaluable lessons about love, creativity, and survival.
In this stunning novel, Newbery Honor winner Gary D. Schmidt expertly weaves multiple themes of loss and recovery in a story teeming with distinctive, unusual characters and invaluable lessons about love, creativity, and survival.
About the Author
2005 Newbery Honor & Printz Honor (Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy
2008 Newbery Honor (The Wednesday Wars)
"Schmidt...makes the implausible believable and the everyday momentous...a gentle, hopefuly, moving story." --Booklist, starred review
"Another winner...deeply satisfying." --Publishers Weekly, starred review
"Schmidt ... [gets] to the emotional heart of every scene without overstatement ... another virtuoso turn by the author of LIZZIE BRIGHT." Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"Schmidt rises above the novel's conventions to create memorable and believable characters." --Horn Book, starred review
"[An] entertaining and nuanced novel....There are laugh-out-loud moments that leaven the many poignant ones." --School Library Journal
"An accessible, humorous school story, and at the same time, an insightful coming-of-age tale."
"Fans of ...LIZZIE BRIGHT AND THE BUCKMINSTER BOY may be pleasantly surprised to see Schmidt's lighter, even sillier side." --Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books