Adam Canfield Watch Your Back

Author: Michael Winerip
Reading Range: 4.8 (AR Finder)
Interest Range: 4-8 (AR Finder)
Plot: Adam Canfield is shoveling snow in a neighbor’s driveway when he is attacked by a group of older teens who steal his money. After this happens, Adam’s parents call the police and the teens are arrested. They are charged with assault. Adam is the editor of his school newspaper called “The Slash.” His co-editor, Jennifer, suggests they have a survey on the bullies at school. He vetoes the idea even through everyone likes. He comes around and decided the paper should have the survey. While this is going on, Adam is taking an advanced science class where they have to come up with a project for the science fair. Adam decides his project will focus on how parents helping their child with their projects give them higher grades. Adam has a lot of other things going on because he gets involved with a group that wants to expose the fact a corruption scheme by a local Realtor developer. Will Adam to solve the various mysteries around him?
Review: After writing the plot, I realized that they were a lot of subplots going on in this story. Another reviewer talked about how the author is spoofing over-scheduled kids. I have to say that both Adam and Jennifer fit that mold. They have sports and activities everyday after school. During school, they are working on the newspaper. I have no idea how they find the time to interview people for articles or much less get their homework. The one subplot that I liked was where Adam was researching how parent help can raise student’s grades. I remember at different fairs that I attended the kids who had parents who helped them were usually the ones that had the best presentations. I had to agree with Adam when he found that to be true. I did enjoy this book. I liked Adam because of how earnest and passionate he is about journalism. He thinks it is important. Even through, it get him into trouble some times he still tries to live up to his ideals. I would recommend this book to older tweens who like stories with complicated plots.
Additional Info:
This is the second book in the Adam Canfield series. I did not realize it until after I read it.
Main Characters:
Adam Canfield-Adam is the editor of “The Slash” which is the school newspaper. He has many activities he is a part of. It is very important to him to follow his journalistic ideals.
Jennifer-Jennifer is his co-editor. She is just as passionate about the paper as he is.
Phoebe-Phoebe is their third grade reporter. She is very interested in nature.
Mrs. Boland-Mrs. Boland is the temporary principal. Adam got the last one fired in the first book.
Mr. Devillio-Mr. Devillio is Adam’s science teacher. He is lazy and not a very good teacher.

Theme: Individual versus society, Knowledge versus ignorance, Power and corruption,

Bibliographic Info:

Winerip, M. (2007). Adam Canfield watch your back! Cambridge, MA: Candlewick Press.

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