Bound To Stay Bound

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 Malcolm under the stars
 Author: Beck, W. H.

 Illustrator: Lies, Brian

 Publisher:  Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
 Pub Year: 2015

 Classification: Fiction
 Physical Description: 257 p., ill., 21 cm.

 BTSB No: 101151 ISBN: 9780544392670
 Ages: 9-12 Grades: 4-7

 Subjects:
 Mystery fiction
 Rats as pets -- Fiction
 Pets -- Fiction
 Animals -- Fiction
 Coins -- Fiction
 Ciphers -- Fiction
 School stories
 Secret societies -- Fiction
 Humorous fiction

Price: $6.50

Summary:
When a rare coin and a strange code are uncovered in McKenna School, Malcolm and the other classroom pets of the Midnight Academy take on their most challenging assignment yet and, through their investigations, they just might save the school from closing.

Accelerated Reader Information:
   Interest Level: MG
   Reading Level: 4.30
   Points: 7.0   Quiz: 175238
Reading Counts Information:
   Interest Level: 3-5
   Reading Level: 3.40
   Points: 14.0   Quiz: 67062

Reviews:
   Kirkus Reviews (05/15/15)
   School Library Journal (08/01/15)

Full Text Reviews:

School Library Journal - 08/01/2015 Gr 3–6—Malcolm the Rat and his animal pals in the Midnight Academy are back, trying to save McKenna Elementary School from closure due to its deteriorating physical condition. This seemingly insurmountable task takes Malcolm and his friends on a sprawling quest to discover secrets left by the school's founder, Walton McKenna—secrets that may be the key to keeping the school open. Malcolm is courageous and resourceful, weaving in and out of the school to find and connect the many puzzle pieces of its complex past. Fortunately, Malcolm is able to read English as well as communicate with the young human "nutters" at McKenna, skills that are essential in order for the valiant rat to be an effective hero. He has a particularly special relationship with a nutter named Amelia, and their bond helps Malcolm accomplish more than he'd be able to by himself. Twists and turns abound, including a forgotten time capsule, buried treasure, secret codes, and hidden identities. The conclusion is satisfying and illustrates that the world can't always be divided into black and white. Soft grayscale pencil drawings by Lies breathe life into the motley cast of animal characters. VERDICT For middle grade readers who enjoy animal adventure tales with many twists and turns.—Amy Holland, Irondequoit Public Library, NY - Copyright 2015 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

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