Synopses & Reviews
Ted Hammond loves a good mystery, and in the spring of his fifth-grade year, he's working on a big one. How can his school in the little town of Plattsford stay open next year if there are going to be only five students? Out here on the Great Plains, in western Nebraska, everyone understands that if you lose the school, you lose the town. But the mystery that has Ted's full attention at the moment is about that face, the face he sees in the upper window of the Andersons' house as he rides past on his paper route. The Andersons moved away two years ago, and their old farmhouse is empty and boarded up tight. At least it's supposed to be.
A shrinking school in a dying town. A face in the window of an empty house. At first these facts don't seem to be related. But Ted Hammond learns that in a very small town, there's no such thing as an isolated event. And the solution of one mystery is often the beginning of another.
"Nobbs does a fine job of portraying aspiring detective Ted Hammond, a fifth-grader who wishes he could solve the mystery of what will become of his family's farm and his one-room schoolhouse as his tiny Nebraska town struggles through tough times. But before he resolves his own situation, a new mystery captures Ted's attention when he sees young April Thayer in the window of the supposedly deserted Anderson house. The chance sighting begins Ted's journey of self-discovery and sparks a town's awakening to the needs of others. Listeners will hear, in Nobbs' voice, Ted's uncertainty, his concern and even anger as he tries to help a family in need while deciding which promises he should keep and which ones he shouldn't. Nobb also ably handles a variety of other voices, including April's Southern twang, drawing listeners in to a story that demonstrates Clements's talent for speaking convincingly to the minds and hearts of middle-graders. Ages 8-12. (July)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Ted Hammond, the only sixth grader in his small Nebraska town's one-room schoolhouse, searches for clues to the disappearance of a homeless family.
About the Author
Andrew Clements is the author of the enormously popular Frindle. More than 10 million copies of his books have been sold, and he has been nominated for a multitude of state awards, including two Christopher Awards and an Edgar Award. His popular works include About Average, Troublemaker, Extra Credit, Lost and Found, No Talking, Room One, Lunch Money, and more. He is also the author of the Benjamin Pratt & the Keepers of the School series. He lives with his wife in central Massachusetts and has four grown children. Visit him at <>AndrewClements.com.Keith Nobbs has appeared on Broadway in The Lion In Winter and off-Broadway in Dog Sees God, Romance, The Hasty Heart, Bye Bye Birdie, Dublin Carol, and Four (Lucille Lortel Award, Drama Desk Nomination). His film credits include Phone Booth, Double Whammy, and 25th Hour. Television credits include The Black Donnellys (series regular), Law and Order: Criminal Intent, and The Sopranos.