Don't Get Caught
When Max receives a mysterious invite from the untraceable, epic prank-pulling Chaos Club, he has to ask: why him? After all, he's Mr. 2.5 GPA, Mr. No Social Life. He's Just Max. And his favorite heist movies have taught him this situation calls for Rule #4: Be suspicious. But it's also his one shot to leave Just Max in the dust...
Yeah, not so much. Max and four fellow students-who also received invites-are standing on the newly defaced water tower when campus security "catches" them. Definitely a setup. And this time, Max has had enough. It's time for Rule #7: Always get payback.
Let the prank war begin.
When Max receives a mysterious invite from the untraceable, epic prank-pulling Chaos Club, he has to ask: why him? After all, he’s Mr. 2.5 GPA, Mr. No Social Life. He’s Just Max. And his favorite heist movies have taught him this situation calls for Rule #4: Be suspicious. But it’s also his one shot to leave Just Max in the dust…
Yeah, not so much. Max and four fellow students-who also received invites-are standing on the newly defaced water tower when campus security “catches” them. Definitely a setup. And this time, Max has had enough. It’s time for Rule #7: Always get payback.
Let the prank war begin.
This book started off by referencing a lot of heist movies and the rules the main character, Max, had learned from watching them. Right away, it caught my interest because I love heist movies and it gave me an immediate connection with Max. I had seen that this book had a Breakfast Club meets Ocean’s 11 feel to it and that just made me more excited because I love both those movies and if this book could pull off the character dynamics like those movies had, I knew it would be great.
Max was a character that I really liked. He was suspicious of the note but went along with it anyway because he was sick of being average, of being unimportant. He was the guy in class that it took a few seconds to remember his name, even if you’d been in the same class together for years. He was our view into the group as they began a prank war of epic proportions and his thoughts often echoed my own on who could be behind the legendary Chaos Club and about the pranks. I liked his struggle between wanting to take down the Chaos Club and not wanting the pranks to go too far. There were many times the interactions between him and Dave had me laughing so hard I was in tears.
The other characters were all well developed. If the book was longer, there likely would have been even more growth, but for non-main characters, I felt like I had a good sense of who they all were. Like in the Breakfast Club, they started off as a stereotype character but the more we, and Max, got to know them, they transformed into more than that. They started to interact with each other more, to help each other, and actually become friends.
The revenge of the Chaos Club and prank war storyline was also great and funny. I completely understood their motivations of wanting to get back at the group that caused them such humiliation and the ensuing prank war was so just much fun to read. I liked that the plot never lost the underlying feel that there were high stakes to their game, even through all the lighter and hilarious moments. I enjoyed trying to figure out who was behind the Chaos Club and all the twists in the plot.
Overall, it was fun to read and I definitely loved all the throwbacks to heist movies. I wouldn’t say no to more from this band of misfits.
This book is definitely fit for reluctant readers, and it has a great pace for keeping readers interested. While the gang starts out a bit lighthearted, the pranks that they devise are both funny, but humiliating for the kids involved. Max feels his conscious speak to him, and he learns to be himself and not what other people want him to be.
I think middle and high schoolers will find this book to be a great read. Especially if they enjoy contemporary fiction, heist movies, and a small dose of mystery. The subject matter in this book is pretty true to teen issues (bullying, nude pics, feeling trapped) and each character works through their issues in their own, positive ways. This book should also find its way into the hands of reluctant readers, as the language and sentence structure keeps readers interested and reading. I mean, not many books actually say "boner" in them, so that should be enough to keep giggling kids reading it!
Characters who grow as book goes on.
Fun mystery element -- who are the members of the Chaos Club?