Rick Dial was the best quarterback in Putnam Hills High’s history, the unstoppable Number 12. But when an accident destroyed his legs, his heroic life ended. Around the same time, his dad disappeared, leaving Rick and little brother alone with his financially-strapped mom. To cope, Rick disappears into his room and loses himself in his video games. Badgered by his mother to get out of his dark room, Rick teeters on crutches and painfully walks to the corner where he is grabbed and a syringe is plunged into his neck . . .
This is the story of Tsar Nicolas II of Russia, the wealthiest monarch in the world, who ruled over 130 million people. It’s also the story of his powerful wife, their friend Rasputin, and their five children. Included throughout are pictures and diary entries from the family, as well as from the peasants who were struggling to survive. Miss Kelly says. “This is a fascinating history of Imperial Russia, for people who normally would not read a history book.
Theodora Tenpenny’s grandfather Jack was an artist, as well as a security guard at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Upon his death he whispers to Theo to “look under the egg” where he promises she will find a letter and a treasure. The “egg” he mentioned is a painting that he made, which has hung over the fireplace for as long as Theo can remember. Taking the painting down, Theo accidently spills alcohol on it and exposes another painting underneath.
Jewel never knew her brother John. Jewel’s grandfather nicknamed her brother Bird, and encouraged him to pretend he could fly. Bird jumped off a cliff and died the day Jewel was born. No one talks about Bird or how he died, and her grandfather doesn’t speak at all. One night Jewel climbs her favorite tree and discovers someone else is already there, and his name is John. The two become fast friends, sharing their hopes and dreams for the future.
Before the Thorskards moved to Trondheim, Ontario, the small town didn’t have a permanent dragon slayer. Most large towns and cities employ dragon slayers, but with the profession lacking new talent, supply and demand creates problems for the average town. Having famous dragon-slayer Lottie Thorskard move to town is like winning the lotto! Dragons are a constant threat, their insatiable appetites competing with mankind’s need for fossil fuels.
Laureth is blind. But in order to travel with her brother to find their missing father in New York, she must pretend to see. Laureth’s father left her clues in his old notebook and she must follow patterns and coincidences in order to find out what has really happened to him. This fast-paced tale takes Laureth and the reader all over New York City to find the real mystery that their father was in search of, all along.
Lucy leaves repeated voicemail messages with a trophy company complaining about a mishandled order, but no one answers or returns her calls. Finally James answers his new phone. While trying to convince Lucy that he is not the trophy company, he tells her what town he lives in and where he goes to school. They become phone friends, sharing stories of family and friends. Two months and many conversations later they make plans to meet, but a family issue keeps James away. They don’t meet face-to-face until the end of the book.
Daniel Pratzer is a newbie on the freshman chess team at his private school. He has made modest progress, but as a patzer (beginner), Daniel is shocked when his super-achieving co-captains ask him to participate in a special tournament. The Manhattan tournament is comprised of three father-son teams. The captains admit it’s not Daniel’s skill they’re after - it’s Daniel’s dad they want on their team. With Mr. Pratzer’s skill as a Grandmaster, they are sure they’ll win the $10,000 prize.
Seraphina is about to be crowned heir to the mermaid throne, when suddenly both of her parents are killed in an attack on her city. Sera goes on the run. Nightmares plague her and drive her and five other mermaids to try to stop an ancient evil that wants to destroy mermaid-kind. Seraphina must deal with a lot to save all and become the mermaid heir.
While standing in the cafeteria line next to Lucy, everyone’s favorite 8th grade English teacher (affectionately nicknamed Fat Bob) collapses and dies.