Bound To Stay Bound

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 Guy Langman, crime scene procrastinator
 Author: Berk, Josh


 Publisher:  Knopf
 Pub Year: 2012

 Classification: Fiction
 Physical Description: 230 p.,  21 cm.

 BTSB No: 113820 ISBN: 9780375857010
 Ages: 13-17 Grades: 8-12

 Subjects:
 Forensic sciences -- Fiction
 Clubs -- Fiction
 Death -- Fiction
 Grief -- Fiction
 Humorous fiction
 Mystery fiction
 New Jersey -- Fiction

Courtesy of Random House Audio

Price: $6.50

Summary:
Guy, his best friend Anoop, and others in the school Forensics Club investigate a break-in and possible murder, which could be tied to his deceased father's past.

Accelerated Reader Information:
   Interest Level: MG+
   Reading Level: 4.00
   Points: 8.0   Quiz: 150380

Common Core Standards 
   Grade 8 → Reading → RL Literature → 8.RL Key Ideas & Details
   Grade 8 → Reading → RL Literature → 8.RL Craft & Structure

Reviews:
   Kirkus Reviews (01/15/12)
   School Library Journal (06/01/12)
   Booklist (05/01/12)
 The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (06/12)

Full Text Reviews:

Booklist - 05/01/2012 Guy discovers his recently deceased father’s secrets, a long-lost relative, a burglar in his house, and a corpse—which is more than enough hassle for any 16-year-old. When his best friend, Anoop Chattopadhyay, wants him to join the school’s forensics squad, he realizes it could be useful for more than just meeting girls. Despite smart-assedly wondering if there really “are four ensics,” he enjoys dusting for fingerprints almost as much as taking bubble baths, both of which prove beneficial as he confronts all of his aforementioned issues. Berk (The Dark Days of Hamburger Halpin, 2010) is best at depicting realistic modern teens, but less skilled at fleshing out any one quality element to grasp onto—the book is crude, but not too crude, and funny, but not too funny. Many guys will enjoy reading it not so much for the thin plot and somewhat weak mystery, but for the truth behind the main character’s slacker facade, his tongue-in-cheek banter and MILF jokes, his authentic private feelings of grief, and the story line’s tidy and rapid resolution. - Copyright 2012 Booklist.

Bulletin for the Center... - 06/01/2012 Guy Langman, a chronically lazy high school junior, is even less inclined than usual to muster any motivation or ambition since the recent death of his father, a larger-than-life septuagenarian with a colorful past. Guy’s best friend, Anoop, cajoles him into joining a new forensics club at school, with the promise of meeting girls, but the only hottie is swiftly claimed by Anoop himself, leaving Guy with less than tempting social prospects among the small band of science geeks. Guy does, however, display a surprising aptitude for delicately lifting fingerprints, and his propensity toward wandering attention actually leads him occasionally to notice clues other students miss. The theft of some valuable coins from the attic, the suspicious death of a rival student at a forensic competition, and the discovery that the deceased Mr. Langman had a grown son he never discussed all converge into a mystery that Guy and his clubmates feel they are in a better position to investigate than the police. The teen-sleuthing plot plays out pretty much as expected, with reality turning out to be far less dramatic than the kids anticipated. Guy himself, however, is a standout character-a wittily drawn bundle of annoying social immaturity, with a cringeworthy sense of humor pretty well limited to sexual and scatological topics, and a few flashes of self awareness that assure readers (and his psychologist, Dr. Waters) that he’ll probably pull through this rough patch just fine. EB - Copyright 2012 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.

School Library Journal - 06/01/2012 Gr 8 Up—Sixteen-year-old Guy is lazy, immature, and sarcastic, and he will do just about anything to meet hot girls, even if that means joining the Forensics Squad with his best friend, Anoop. His father has recently died, and the teen's wisecracking only partially helps him cope with the loss. The Forensics Squad does lead Guy and Anoop to attractive girls, and also helps them solve three mysteries surrounding the identity of a man in an old photo with Guy's father, the theft of valuable coins from Guy's attic, and the death of the teen's look-alike on a rival school's forensics team. As he struggles to solve the cases, Guy writes down what he remembers of his father's words of wisdom and wonders what he would have done. The writing starts as a book about his dad and over time morphs into a journal of the teen's own thoughts, revealing his sensitive side. The boys' friendship is genuine, and the back-and-forth between them is realistic and sprinkled with mild profanity and sexual references that's not surprising to hear from older teens. Their trip to Manhattan in pursuit of the man pictured with Guy's father results in a hilarious adventure and vivid glimpse of the city. Strong characters, a well-structured plot, and a dash of CSI-like science make this novel a surefire hit.—M. Kozikowski, Sachem Public Library, Holbrook, NY - Copyright 2012 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

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