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Book Scavenger (The Book Scavenger series 1) by [Jennifer Chambliss Bertman]
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Book Scavenger (The Book Scavenger series 1) Kindle Edition

4.8 out of 5 stars 310 ratings
Book 1 of 3 in The Book Scavenger series

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Length: 367 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Age Level: 9 - 14
Grade Level: 4 - 6

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 4–6—Twelve-year-old Emily doesn't have enough time to get attached to places. She and her family move yearly, pursuing a Kerouac-inspired, footloose family adventure. Through their travels, Emily anchors herself through an online community called Book Scavenger, a geocaching-style game where participants hide books in public places and reveal the locations through encoded clues. Book Scavenger is the brainchild of Garrison Griswold, the "Willy Wonka of publishing," a San Francisco-based publisher with a penchant for elaborate spectacles and games. When Emily's family moves to San Francisco, she's excited to encounter the elusive Griswold and to participate in his newest game. Unfortunately, he is attacked on his way to a press conference, and even Emily's beloved Book Scavenger may be in jeopardy. The key to it all just might be in a mysterious book that Emily and her new neighbor James found at the BART station, but time is running short, and sinister (if bumbling) forces pursue them. Sprinkled with ciphers, San Francisco landmarks, and literary allusions, Book Scavenger is a fun, light, implausible adventure. The action drags occasionally, and the characterizations are sparse and sometimes overly cute, but the book's goofy, feckless charm is undeniable. VERDICT This will appeal to fans of Blue Balliett's art-world mysteries.—Katya Schapiro, Brooklyn Public Library --This text refers to the hardcover edition.

Review

A New York Times Bestseller!
An Amazon Best Book of the Year
An Indie Next List Pick

“Full of heart and replete with challenging ciphers for readers to decode, Bertman's debut is literary cousin to classic puzzlers like The Westing Game, and a story that values books and reading above other pursuits. Sure to be popular with voracious readers, it's also a valentine to anybody who knows that a 13-digit clue that begins with 978- is not a phone number.” ―Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

“In her first novel, Jennifer Chambliss Bertman introduces a smart, resourceful 12-year-old who makes her first true friend through a mutual passion for solving puzzles. . . Fans of Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library will appreciate the abundant literary allusions, and readers will hope for more adventures, hinted at in the book's final lines.” ―Shelf Awareness, starred review

“Emily's sleuthing weaves well with her journey to nurture friendships and set down everlasting roots. A debut that challenges the brain while warming the heart.” ―Kirkus Reviews

“Sprinkled with ciphers, San Francisco landmarks, and literary allusions, Book Scavenger is a fun, light, implausible adventure. . . This will appeal to fans of Blue Balliett's art-world mysteries.” ―School Library Journal

“Well paced and involving, the story will intrigue kids with an interest in mysteries and codes as well as books. The writing includes references to local landmarks as well as literary allusions to Jack Kerouac, Robert Louis Stevenson, and, especially, Edgar Allan Poe. A lively first novel.” ―Booklist

“A love letter to San Francisco and its literary history, this well-paced novel of intrigue also provides quite the education, namedropping the likes of Jack Kerouac, Dashiell Hammett, and Amy Tan, diving into the world of ciphers, and offering bountiful brainteasers with Dickensian naming devices (there's an explanatory author's note), all while maintaining a skillful and satisfying balance of brains and heart. . . . be prepared to start a Book Scavenger chapter (pun intended) in your own library, stat.” ―The Bulletin

“The plot is clever and the pace of the book will keep the readers curious up to the climactic end. Several other books with themes related to puzzles and games are alluded to in the story. This book will be fun for lovers of this genre.” ―VOYA

“A puzzle-mystery in the spirit of The Westing Game, Book Scavenger challenges readers to play along. The codes and puzzles are pitched at the perfect level for tween sleuths, and the literary references . . . will pique readers; interests in doing some scavenging of their own. Part friendship story, part travel adventure and part cryptography manual, Jennifer Chambliss Bertman's debut is a book lover's delight.” ―Bookpage

“Codes and ciphers star in this puzzle-game of a novel, offering challenges for code-breaking fanatics plus plentiful explanations for those who prefer that someone else do the legwork” ―The Horn Book

An NCTE Notable Children's Book in the Language Arts
A Bank Street College Best Book of the Year
A Scripps National Spelling Bee Great Words, Great Works List Selection
A PW Best Book for Summer
An Amazon.com Best Book of the Month
A Triple Crown Award Winner
A Texas Lamplighter Award Nominee
A Pennsylvania Young Readers Choice Award Nominee
A Georgia Children's Book Award Finalist
A Colorado Book Award Finalist
A Maryland Black Eyed Susan Award Nominee
A Utah Educational Library Media Association Master List Selection
A Missouri Mark Twain List Selection
A Nebraska Golden Sower Award Finalist
A Connecticut Nutmeg Book Award Nominee
A Utah Beehive Award Nominee
An Illinois Rebecca Caudill Young Reader's Award Nominee
An Illinois Bluestem Award Nominee
A Mississippi Magnolia Children's Choice Book Award Nominee
A Rhode Island Middle School Book Award Nominee
A Tennessee Volunteer State Book Award Nominee
A North Carolina Young Adult Book Award Nominee
A Washington Library Association Sasquatch Award Nominee
A Washington Sasquatch Award Nominee
A Hawaii Nene Award Nominee
An Oregon Battle of the Books Contender
A Minnesota Maud Hart Lovelace Award Nominee
A Minnesota Star of the North Award Nominee

--This text refers to the hardcover edition.

Product details

Customer reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5
310 customer ratings
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Reviewed in the United States on August 13, 2016
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Reviewed in the United States on October 25, 2016
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Reviewed in the United States on August 11, 2015
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Top international reviews

SmoothSailor
3.0 out of 5 stars Way overrated
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 15, 2018
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Victoria Howard
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 25, 2020
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KirstyMum1
5.0 out of 5 stars Charming story that will appeal to all book lovers
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 17, 2018
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TC
1.0 out of 5 stars Weird
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 9, 2018
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Jazz
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely book, very clever!
Reviewed in Spain on March 11, 2019
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Dennis Brown
4.0 out of 5 stars Good addition to a youths bookshelf
Reviewed in Canada on October 4, 2016
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#booklover
4.0 out of 5 stars An awesome book 📚 😀
Reviewed in India on July 15, 2019
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stacie prude
5.0 out of 5 stars Good read
Reviewed in Canada on March 18, 2019
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Jacqueline H.
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Reviewed in Canada on February 25, 2017
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Linda ruetz
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in Canada on September 9, 2015
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Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Reviewed in Australia on November 2, 2016
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