What an exciting book!
Who wants to take it away?
Why can’t kids read what they want?!
The Adventurers! Donovan can’t wait to read the novel that Mr. Howe has chosen for their fifth-grade class – three young people trying to stop an evil mastermind, with danger and bravery at every turn!
But his mom’s bad habit of jumping to the end of a book halts everything. She interprets its final sentence as too mature for tweens to handle: “At that moment, Rick knew just how deeply he loved Oliver, and Oliver knew just how deeply he loved Rick, and the understanding of this moment would lead them to much of the happiness and adventure that came next.”
She calls other parents and visits the principal, making Mr. Howe take back The Adventurers until the school board can meet about it. But Donovan forgot his copy at home (way under his bed), so he gets to read it – alligators and helicopters and three amazing friends saving the world.
Meanwhile, shy Gideon is stunned to make a new friend when Roberto moves to town – a fellow lover of turtles and books. Joelle and Tucker have been his friends forever, but Roberto likes Gideon for being himself, and the pair spends more and more time together.
Can Donovan get the author to town to defend the book?
Does Oliver have to choose between help Rick escape from the alligator and capturing the villain?
Does Roberto share the same feelings as Gideon?
At the school board meeting, viewpoints clash. Some adults want to “protect kids” by banning the book. Members of the community and gay students speak up for everyone’s right to live and love.
Three stories, presented chapter by chapter – Donovan’s headed by a book symbol, Rick and Oliver’s by an alligator, and Gideon and Roberto’s by a turtle – each symbol reminding us of the characters’ essential focus.
Released in paperback on 5 September 2023 – read the first pages free here, courtesy of the publisher.
What book has revealed an important truth about your own self to you?