Clay Hensley is known for two things: being good at art and getting in trouble. The principal has a file on him that's as thick as a brick. His latest prank involved drawing a picture of a donkey that looks just like the principal. Clay thinks it's fun to get into trouble and then try to talk himself out of it. Clay's brother, Mitch, though, is worried about Clay; Mitch just got out jail, and he's worried about the road that Clay's going down. Is it too late for Clay to change his path - and does he even want to?
In a lesser writer, this book could come across as preachy or too heavily message-y. Andrew Clements, though, has such a talent for creating characters who are three-dimensional and placing them in such a realistic school environment. Clay doesn't magically change overnight and suddenly become a 'better person.' Similarly, the adults aren't all good (or all bad) but have flaws as well as their positive characteristics. Will this be as popular as some of Clements other titles? Time will tell, but it's definitely worth a look.
See more at Simon and Schuster's website.
I got an advanced copy from the Simon & Schuster Galley Grab.
Find it at Amazon.
Read it with:
Frindle by Andrew Clements
No Talking by Andrew Clements
It's a Book by Lane Smith
The Lemonade War by Jacqueline Davies
The Lemonade Crime by Jacqueline Davies