From Charlie's Point of View
The characters are quirky and real. There's Charlie, of course, plus his good friend Bernadette. The brash, annoying (but often entertaining) Lewis is part of the sleuthing team. Charlie and Bernadette know Uriah, a homeless man who suddenly has a little bit of cash. At school, Frank is a creepy bully and Rachel may have some interesting layers beneath her bimbo exterior. And then there's the oh-so-cool (and he knows it) teacher, Mr. Floyd, as well as Mr. Underglow III, Charlie's educational assistant. One character I particularly liked and wish I could have read more about is the mysterious and strong small fellow named Gideon (odd things happen when he's around).
If Charlie can't exonerate his dad (believed by the police to be the bank robber), not only will his father go to prison but Charlie will move away--and Bernadette cannot have that. The plot twists and turns in an exciting and unpredictable way.
I casually picked up this book one evening--and then I could not put it down until I finished it. It's that good. Just one question: Where has this author been all my life?
This book was recommended to me by our middle school librarian. She had never read it but heard it was good. I started into it for the purpose of deciding whether or not to use it for a unit on mystery. Overall impression- very exciting writing for a junior fiction. All readers will appreciate the quick wit and compassion of all the characters!