Bound To Stay Bound

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 Author: Hiaasen, Carl

 Publisher:  Knopf (2023)

 Classification: Fiction
 Physical Description: 323 p., map, 22 cm

 BTSB No: 442845 ISBN: 9780593376287
 Ages: 10-14 Grades: 5-9

 Smuggling -- Fiction
 Grave robbing -- Fiction
 Boats and boating -- Fiction
 Key West (Fla.) -- Fiction

Price: $23.28

When fifteen-year-old Valdez Jones VIII, a.k.a. Wrecker, unwittingly becomes entangled with a group of smugglers and grave robbers, he must deep dive into their shady dealings in order to escape their twisted net.

Accelerated Reader Information:
   Interest Level: MG
   Reading Level: 5.30
   Points: 10.0   Quiz: 522323

   Kirkus Reviews (07/15/23)
   Booklist (+) (12/01/23)
 The Hornbook (00/09/23)

Full Text Reviews:

Booklist - 07/23/2023 *Starred Review* After a five-year absence from the youth sphere, Hiaasen makes a welcome return with a new mystery set in Key West. Drenched in local color, the story begins as 15-year-old Valdez Jones VIII (“Wrecker”) happens upon a suspicious boat while out fishing. That encounter is enough to get him unwillingly entangled with a dangerous smuggler, whom he refers to as Silver Mustache. Hiaasen packs his tale with rich character details, local history, and present-day concerns—from COVID-19 to the environmental degradation wrought by the tourism trade—all while carefully spinning a layered mystery that gets more serious with every turn. Wrecker is a wonderful protagonist by virtue of how average he is. He’s a good kid who’s awkward around girls and a bit of a loner. He also has an enduring pride in being descended from a long line of “wreckers” (people who free dive to salvage goods from shipwrecks), hence his self-ascribed nickname. Much of the story’s action takes place on the water, which makes for a nice change of pace. The other prominent location is the island’s cemetery, where Wrecker cleans tombstones and uncovers both a shameful piece of the island’s history and a big clue to Silver Mustache’s illegal operation. Wielding his writing talents and wit, Hiaasen seamlessly incorporates these disparate elements into one heck of a ride. - Copyright 2023 Booklist.

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