Case brief: The opening of the Kalamazoo City Dome - the world's largest indoor/outdoor amusement complex - has everyone in the city buzzing, especially because it's going to be the shooting site for Chase Mercy's new blockbuster film. But that's when things start to go haywire, and Mayor Saunders suspects foul play. Who would want to sabotage the Dome, and why?
This is Alex’s story. But he doesn’t know exactly what it’s about yet, so you probably shouldn’t either. Instead, here are some things that it’s sort of about (but not really): It’s sort of (but not really) about brain surgery. It’s sort of (but not really) about a hamster named Jaws 2 (after the original Jaws (who died), not the movie Jaws 2). It’s sort of (but actually quite a lot) about Alex’s parents. It’s sort of (but not really) about feeling ostrichized (which is a better word for excluded [because ostriches can’t fly so they often feel left out]).
Ross is dead, and Blake, Sim, and Kenny are furious. To make it right, they steal Ross' ashes and set out from their home on the English coast for the tiny village of Ross in southern Scotland, a place their friend had always wanted to go. What follows is an unforgettable journey with illegal train rides, bungee jumping, girls, and high-speed police chasesall with Ross's ashes along for the ride.
Nevada sheep rancher Sabine Eckleberry's life is in shambles. His wife has decamped to Arizona to run a dog-grooming business; his youngest daughter needs a husband; his irrepressible son, VJ, wants to turn the ranch into an ostrich-breeding operation; and the wild burros he has adopted to guard his sheep can't get along with their charges. Now his family and friends are about to descend on the ranch to celebrate Sabine’s 72nd birthday.
Alex has a lot of the same concerns most of us do growing up (exams, puberty and, in his case, a punctuation obsession plus a little quantum mechanics) but since his brain surgery, everyone in his life is behaving a little mysteriously. Maybe it's adjusting to life after epilepsy or maybe it's the pressure of his pending scholarship application, but Alex is starting to see the world differently.
In the friendly town of Hickabee, the quirky and selfish Ms. McBostrich decides to take away the beauty of an animal to please only herself. Although Ms. McBosrich originally thinks she is satisfied with her decisions, the events of the story force her to learn a most unforgettable lesson.
Alex has the concerns every 12-year-old has but lately, ever since his brain surgery, everyone in his life is behaving a little mysteriously. He decides it's time to investigate. So begins the journey that will take him to the limits of his understanding and take you back to the wonder and conviction of your own adolescence, to a time when you understood the world so much better than it understood you.