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Cracking the code isn’t all it’s cracked up to be in this scavenger-hunt adventure from a Coretta Scott King Honor–winning author.
Chester Keene takes great comfort in his routines. After school Monday to Thursday is bowling, and Friday, the best of days, is laser tag! But most special of all is when Chester gets secret spy messages from his dad, who is always on covert government assignments, which is why Chester has never met him.
Then, one day at lunch, Chester’s classmate Skye approaches him with a clue. They’ve been tasked with a complex puzzle-solving mission. Chester takes their assignments very seriously, but Skye treats it like a big game. Skye proves to be a useful partner and good company, even if her haphazard, free-wheeling ways are disruptive to Chester’s carefully curated schedule.
As Chester and Skye get closer to their final clue, they discover the key to their spy assignment: they have to stop a heist! But cracking this code might lead to a discovery Chester never saw coming.
About the Author
Kekla Magoon is the author of many novels and nonfiction books for young readers, including The Season of Styx Malone, How It Went Down, The Rock and the River, and the Robyn Hoodlum Adventure series. She has received the Margaret A. Edwards Award, the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award, the Coretta Scott King–John Steptoe Award for New Talent, four Coretta Scott King Honor Awards, the Walter Award Honor, an NAACP Image Award, and inclusion on the National Book Award Longlist.
Kekla conducts school and library visits nationwide and serves on the Writers Council for the National Writing Project. She holds a BA from Northwestern University and an MFA in writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts, where she now serves on faculty.
★ "Magoon makes space for and celebrates the sensitive and solitary middle-grade readers who are happiest flying under the radar." —Shelf Awareness, starred review
"Engrossing and heartwarming; explores belonging, love, and forgiveness in families and friendships." —Kirkus Reviews
"A wacky adventure that toes the line between playful fantasy and deep-rooted emotional journey." —School Library Journal
"Taking great care with issues related to blended families and bullying, Magoon gives readers another emotional and satisfying read." —The Horn Book
"Astutely conceived riddles and Chester’s lively first-person narration deliver an action-packed mystery." —Publishers Weekly