Adam, Lewis, Finn & Emily (The Trackers) are four smart kids who spend their time inventing, building and testing technological gadgets. They work out of Adam’s workshop located at the back of his Dad’s computer repair shop. The kids are smart, but one particular day they aren’t quite smart enough. A hacker manages to infiltrate their carefully (they thought!) encrypted & secure computer files. The hacker wants something and is willing to blackmail the kids to get it. He wants the Trackers to solve a puzzle and in return, their files will be returned.
Should they go to the police? Should they tell Adam’s Dad? Or would it be better…a challenge…and more FUN to beat this guy at his own game? Author: Patrick Carman
The Trackers Official Website (includes video that goes with the book & a glyphmasters game – one video shows all the gadgets)
If you like technology and gadgets in the hands of smart kids try these:
Spy movies playing at branch libraries this summer:
G-Force (PG) animated, 88 minutes
In this hilarious animated feature, a team of trained secret agent guinea pigs work for a government agency. The team is asked to prevent a diabolical billionaire from taking over the world. Schedule
The Spy Next Door (PG) 94 minutes
Bob Ho is an undercover CIA superspy who decides to give up his career in espionage to settle down with his next-door neighbor and girlfriend, Gillian. But Bob has one more mission to complete before Gillian agrees to marry him: winning over her three opinionated kids. Schedule
Vita buys a used guitar, thinks up a great band name – The Vita-mins – and then puts up flyers at school to hold auditions to find some bandmates. Some kids show up but none of them play an instrument. They meet again anyway and a plan starts to come together. Plinko and Jay have video skills, Tanya writes songs, Walt’s an artist and Vita can sing. It’s not a band, but it IS something special. The kids put together a show – see for yourself at http://www.zebrafish.com/. You can even download Vita’s song that Tanya wrote.
Zebrafish is a graphic novel with great pictures and a great story. The kids are real – not comic book superheroes. If you like lots of illustrations and stories that show true-to life kids dealing with real life problems, try these:
This is book 5 and the last in the Fablehaven series. The battle between the Knights of the Dawn (Kendra and Seth, their Grandparents & other Knights) and The Society of the Evening Star (The Sphinx, demons & other bad guys) continues. The Sphinx has taken control of The Society and threatens to open the legendary demon prison ZZyxx by collecting its five keys. If The Sphinx manages to do this it isn’t just the magical creatures whose lives are at stake, it’s everyone.
Kendra is still emotional and methodical and makes her decisions based on what she knows and senses about the characters of the people she encounters. Kendra likes to think things through, a luxury she doesn’t have when faced with an epic demon battle.
Seth is still impulsive and impatient and prone to jump in before he thinks. He makes questionable alliances and finds himself trapped by his own scheming. He is a boy of quick action though and his decisive nature saves the day on more than one occasion.
They are just like the rest of us, figuring out their own strengths & weaknesses and figuring out who their real friends are…it’s just that they’re in the middle of a demon battle and their decisions make the difference between life and death. Author: Brandon Mull
Brandon Mull NEWS: “After meeting with Simon & Schuster, it looks like my first Beyonders book, A World Without Heroes, will release near the end of March 2011.”
Fourteen year-old Enola is still living in disguise, staying one step ahead of her older brothers Mycroft and Sherlock. Enola has been on her own for almost a year trying desperately to find her missing mother as well as stay away from her two brothers who think the best place for her is a girl’s boarding school.
When a mysterious package arrives at Ferndall Hall – the estate where the Holmes children grew up – Sherlock is called home to investigate. The art on the intricately decorated package is clearly the work of Lady Eudoria Holmes, Enola’s missing mother. The package is addressed to Enola.
A mysterious package addressed TO a missing person FROM a missing person. Now that’s a mystery for the master – Sherlock Holmes. Of course he might need a little help from his sister Enola, because she isn’t going to be found, unless she WANTS to be found. A terrific end to a great mystery series. Author: Nancy Springer
If you like reading about Enola try Death in the Air or Vanishing Girl. These two are about Sherlock Holmes as a boy solving mysteries – they reveal how and why Sherlock became a detective in the first place. If you like the time period in Enola and you like the idea of kids solving mysteries on their own in a dark, gothic setting, try The Eyeball Collector or The Story of Cirrus Flux.
Dewey is in charge of Marriss’s Bike Barn while his parents are out of town. Dewey doesn’t really mind. He likes working on bikes. His little brother Vince helps out too. Vince is actually the one with mad mechanic skills but he’s kind of shy, so he relies on Dewey to handle the customers. Between the two of them, the cheat sheets their Dad left and their list of 8 Rules for Bicycle Repair, they’ve got the shop covered and their big sister Lil can take care of everything else, including the twins.
Everything is under control until a fuel shortage strands their parents away from home and makes everyone in their town suddenly need their bike repaired. The boys wake up to people lined up outside The Bike Barn before they’ve even had breakfast. It gets so bad and Dewey gets so tired that he stumbles outside one morning…without his pants! That’s sleep depravation for you!
The longer the fuel shortage lasts the testier people get. It is so bad that there are no longer cars driving on the highway that passes their house. The highway is full of peole riding bicycles. It’s weird…and quiet. It sure is good for business until the boys start to run out of parts and tempers start to flare. Meanwhile, back at the house, the kids are beginning to run out of food and the twins ask every 5 minutes, “when is Mommy coming home.”
With bicycles piling up and not enough hands to fix them Dewey hatches a plan that is just like a Marriss – sometimes you’ve got to help people help themselves. I loved watching Dewey and his brothers and sisters get through this crisis together. Each one brings something to the team that helps them cope with each situation that comes up. And don’t even think about messing with a Marriss because you’ll then be dealing with the other four. Lil, Dewey, Vince, Angus & Ava, I’d want them on my team any day! Author: Leslie Connor