Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos

December 24th, 2015 by

dead-end-in-norvelt-by-jack-gantosSubmitted by Grace, Age 10 from Connecticut

Rating: ★★★★★

I picked the book dead end because it keeps you on the edge of your seat and is very exciting. I love this book and if you like gross stuff then you will love this book to. it is a good book for readers that like a very interesting book it is a great book and will keep you entertained I love this book. I hope this book review will get you to read dead end it is an awesome book it is good for readers a little more advanced. It has a lot of cliffhangers this is an amazing book hopefully you will think so to. It gives great description and detail it is a magnificent book and it will have you wonder what happens next once you pick this book you won’t be able to put it down is an amazing book and is good book for a lot of people like me I love this book hopefully you will love it as much as I do.

Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos

December 19th, 2014 by

dead-end-in-norvelt-by-jack-gantosSubmitted by Kristian, Age 11 from New York

Rating: ★★★★★

This book is the best. It’s about a boy ho is in norvelt. And he has a condishin that wen he is scared his nose starts bleeding. So he is looking at a Japanese rifle and watching a move of a wor and he takes the clip and there is a bolet is stil in the gun and he puls the trigger…

Joey Pigza Loses Control by Jack Gantos

June 12th, 2014 by

Joey-Pigza-Loses-Control_Jack-GantosSubmitted by Wyatt, Age 11 from New York

Rating: ★★★★☆

I just started reading this book and it’s already sooooo good. It’s about this boy named Joey who has ADHD and has to wear patches just to contain himself. He is sent away for 6 weeks to get to know his dad. wonder what happens next. 🙂

Norvelt to Nowhere: Book Review

April 16th, 2014 by

Have you ever read Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos, winner of the 2012 Newbery Award? If not, you should. And if you like it (I predict an 85% chance that you will), then come back and read this book recommendation for the sequel, Norvelt to Nowhere. Go ahead, I’ll just chill here.

cat-chilling-waiting

Back? Finished? Cool.

And for those of you who didn’t read it, WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD for Dead End in Norvelt:

At the end of the first book, young Jack and his elderly friend, Miss Volker, had discovered that Mr. Spizz  poisoned all the old ladies in the town of Norvelt in order to gain Miss Volker’s hand in marriage. It’s a crazy way to put a ring on it, but Mr. Spizz is pretty crazy.

ring on it

In Norvelt to Nowhere, with Spizz on the run for the murders, Jack’s life seems to be back to normal. But then more old ladies die under suspicious circumstances, so Jack and Miss Volker hit the road to investigate!

Read this book for…

  • Murder mystery solving!
  • Grand theft auto by a 12-year-old! (DO NOT try this at home.)
  • A crazy action scene involving a harpoon and a VW Bug!
  • Rich stories about America’s history that you probably won’t hear about in school.
  • Not one, but TWO detectives on Jack and Miss Volker’s tail!
  • A surprisingly decades-long romance wrought with jealousy.
  • And lots, lots more!

Note: I “read” this book by listening to the audiobook, which is narrated by the author himself, Jack Gantos. If you’re ever interested in listening to an audiobook, this book (or Dead End in Norvelt) is a great one! You’ll feel like you’re sitting in a cafe with the author, who is telling you all about his life! Here’s an excerpt:

Norvelt-to-Nowhere_Jack-GantosA warning for my fellow readers, though: There is definitely a point in this book where you might be confused and wondering, “Where is this all going?!” But you’ll be rewarded for sticking it out to the end. After all, it’s not every day you get invited along on a crazy cross-country road trip with a boy, his old lady friend, and a possible murderer at their heels!

— Nancy

icon_nancyNancy has never been on a cross-country road trip and plans to go as soon as self-driving cars are available to the public. That way she can nap and read the whole way.

More about Nancy »

Dead End in Norvelt: 2012 Newbery Medal Winner!

January 26th, 2012 by

As you guys know, I’m a very impatient person. So even though it seems kind of backwards, I’m willing to go the extra mile in order to save time. If I want to see a TV show, I record it so I can fast-forward through the commercials. If I want to know what the President said in a speech, I’ll go online afterwards and skim the text transcript. If I know where I’m going to eat dinner, I’ll look at the restaurant’s website beforehand so that I’m already familiar with the menu when I get there. Like I said, I’m VERY impatient.

But in the last few weeks, I’ve watched three big-deal spectacles in real-time — which just goes to show you how super important they were. And the three events were: the Golden Globe Awards, the playoff game between the 49ers and the Giants, and the announcement of the American Library Association Youth Media Awards (ALAymas)!

What? You don’t know that last one? Well, I bet you’ve heard of the Newbery Medal, which is one of the ALAymas. Every January, it’s given to “the author of the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children” in the previous year. Past winners include completely-awesome-major-big-deal books like The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo, Holes by Louis Sachar, The Giver by Lois Lowry, and Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis.

And earlier this week, a new winner joined the ranks of this prestigious group:

dead-end-in-norvelt-by-jack-gantos

Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos

As you may recall from our book trailer for Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key, Nancy and I have been fans of Jack Gantos for a while now. So we extend a hearty congratulations to the man of the hour! But we also have to give ourselves a disapproving shake of the head and a look of pure disdain because, well, we haven’t read this book yet!

But we definitely plan to read Dead End in Norvelt ASAP — not just because it won the Newbery, but also because it sounds totally awesome! Here’s part of the official description:

Melding the entirely true and the wildly fictional, Dead End in Norvelt is a novel about an incredible two months for a kid named Jack Gantos, whose plans for vacation excitement are shot down when he is “grounded for life” by his feuding parents, and whose nose spews bad blood at every little shock he gets. But plenty of excitement (and shocks) are coming Jack’s way once his mom loans him out to help a fiesty old neighbor with a most unusual chore — typewriting obituaries filled with stories about the people who founded his utopian town. As one obituary leads to another, Jack is launced on a strange adventure involving molten wax, Eleanor Roosevelt, twisted promises, a homemade airplane, Girl Scout cookies, a man on a trike, a dancing plague, voices from the past, Hells Angels … and possibly murder.

Cookies and murder in one book?! Obviously, WE ARE IN!

And we’ll also be adding the 2012 Newbery Honor Books to our To Be Read list:

  • Inside Out & Back Again by Thanhha Lai
  • Breaking Stalin’s Nose by Eugene Yelchin

So, if you’ll excuse us, we need to go out and obtain some books, like, right now. But if you have already read any of these big winners, leave a comment and us know!

— Karen

Karen used to get lots of nosebleeds when she was a kid. She did NOT enjoy putting tissue up her nose to stop the blood. But to be honest, she kinda liked the feeling of pulling it out once the bleeding had stopped. That’s not gross, right?

More about Karen »

Book Trailer: Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key

August 31st, 2011 by

This book trailer for Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key was originally the Mystery Book Theater video for our More School Stories theme. For more on Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key, check out our “Rule the School” podcast.

School is a nightmare for Joey in Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key by Jack Gantos. But that’s only because everyone at school thinks he’s the nightmare! Poor guy. It’s not his fault his meds are duds, but accidents keep happening (especially after eating shoofly pie).