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This fiery autobiographical novel captures a pivotal week or two in the life of fourteen-year-old Jack Gantos, as the author reveals the moment he began to slide off track as a kid who in just a few years would find himself locked up in a federal penitentiary for the crimes portrayed in the memoir Hole in My Life. Set in the Fort Lauderdale neighborhood of his family's latest rental home, The Trouble in Me opens with an explosive encounter in which Jack first meets his awesomely rebellious older neighbor, Gary Pagoda, just back from juvie for car theft. Instantly mesmerized, Jack decides he will do whatever it takes to be like Gary. As a follower, Jack is eager to leave his old self behind, and desperate for whatever crazy, hilarious, frightening thing might happen next. But he may not be as ready as he thinks when the trouble in him comes blazing to life.This title has Common Core connections.
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About the Author

Jack Gantos has been hailed as "elementary school's answer to Hunter S. Thompson" (BCCB). He is the author of many books, including the Jack Henry and Joey Pigza series; the Rotten Ralph books; the Printz Honor and Sibert Honor memoir Hole in My Life; and the Norvelt novels-Dead End in Norvelt, recipient of the Newbery Medal, and From Norvelt to Nowhere. He lives in Boston.

Reviews

"Eloquent, unflinching and darkly funny, The Trouble in Me chronicles a boy's initiation into manhood--one warped version of it, anyway." --Chicago Tribune"The book has an unsettling power ... A gutsy ... cautionary romp." --The New York Times Book Review"[An] incendiary fictionalized memoir ... Abundant style and substance makes this an irresistible cautionary tale ... Gantos has won a Newbery Medal, Printz Honor, Sibert Honor, and countless hearts. Readers will want to know how he became one of a kind." --Booklist, starred review"Gantos's characteristic humor and keen observation of the fragile teen psyche combine with heartbreaking authenticity in this unflinching look at how a good kid can easily go down a wrong path ... Hand this to the so-called "bad" kids, the lost kids, and the ones struggling to find their way." --School Library Journal, starred review"Full of 'don't try this at home' moments ... Jack's interior monologue also has a heartbreaking edge." --Publishers Weekly"Readers will laugh ... at Jack's reckless antics and lack of impulse control, but they will probably also sympathize with his deep itch to make a change." --Kirkus Reviews Eloquent, unflinching and darkly funny, The Trouble in Me chronicles a boy's initiation into manhood one warped version of it, anyway. Chicago Tribune The book has an unsettling power ... A gutsy ... cautionary romp. The New York Times Book Review [An] incendiary fictionalized memoir ... Abundant style and substance makes this an irresistible cautionary tale ... Gantos has won a Newbery Medal, Printz Honor, Sibert Honor, and countless hearts. Readers will want to know how he became one of a kind. Booklist, starred review Gantos s characteristic humor and keen observation of the fragile teen psyche combine with heartbreaking authenticity in this unflinching look at how a good kid can easily go down a wrong path ... Hand this to the so-called bad kids, the lost kids, and the ones struggling to find their way. School Library Journal, starred review Full of 'don't try this at home' moments ... Jack's interior monologue also has a heartbreaking edge. Publishers Weekly Readers will laugh ... at Jack's reckless antics and lack of impulse control, but they will probably also sympathize with his deep itch to make a change. Kirkus Reviews" Eloquent, unflinching and darkly funny, "The Trouble in Me" chronicles a boy's initiation into manhood one warped version of it, anyway. "Chicago Tribune" The book has an unsettling power ... A gutsy ... cautionary romp. "The New York Times Book Review" [An] incendiary fictionalized memoir ... Abundant style and substance makes this an irresistible cautionary tale ... Gantos has won a Newbery Medal, Printz Honor, Sibert Honor, and countless hearts. Readers will want to know how he became one of a kind. "Booklist," starred review Gantos s characteristic humor and keen observation of the fragile teen psyche combine with heartbreaking authenticity in this unflinching look at how a good kid can easily go down a wrong path ... Hand this to the so-called bad kids, the lost kids, and the ones struggling to find their way. "School Library Journal," starred review Full of 'don't try this at home' moments ... Jack's interior monologue also has a heartbreaking edge. "Publishers Weekly" Readers will laugh ... at Jack's reckless antics and lack of impulse control, but they will probably also sympathize with his deep itch to make a change. "Kirkus Reviews"" "Eloquent, unflinching and darkly funny, "The Trouble in Me" chronicles a boy's initiation into manhood--one warped version of it, anyway." --"ChicagoTribune""Know thyself, Alexander Pope advises us, and Gantos does that in spades in this insightful prequel to his award-winning memoir Hole in My Life (2002) . . . One of the tools the spellbinding Gantos uses in this incendiary fictionalized memoir is simile and metaphor. Fire is a recurring motif (it's what brings the boys together and informs their developing relationship): meat drippings that Jack grills crisp like someone burning at the stake and mosquitoes are winged formations of humming hypodermics. Abundant style and substance makes this an irresistible cautionary tale . . . Gantos has won a Newbery Medal, Printz Honor, Sibert Honor, and countless hearts. Readers will want to know how he became one of a kind." --"Booklist," starred review"Gantos's characteristic humor and keen observation of the fragile teen psyche combine with heartbreaking authenticity in this unflinching look at how a good kid can easily go down a wrong path . . . Hand this to the so-called "bad" kids, the lost kids, and the ones struggling to find their way." --"School Library Journal," starred review"Full of 'don't try this at home' moments . . . Jack's interior monologue also has a heartbreaking edge." --"Publishers Weekly""Readers will laugh . . . at Jack's reckless antics and lack of impulse control, but they will probably also sympathize with his deep itch to make a change." --"Kirkus Reviews"

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