Notes from a Liar and Her Dog ) exceptionally atmospheric novel has equally unusual characters and plot lines. Tw"/>

AL CAPONE DOES MY SHIRTS

Gennifer Choldenko, Author . Putnam $15.99 (228p) ISBN 978-0-399-23861-1

Set on Alcatraz Island in 1935, Choldenko's (Notes from a Liar and Her Dog ) exceptionally atmospheric novel has equally unusual characters and plot lines. Twelve-year-old narrator Moose Flanagan has just moved to the island, where his father has been hired as an electrician and guard. At first Moose is spooked at being in such close proximity to the nation's most notorious criminals, and he doesn't know what to make of the all-powerful warden's bossy daughter, Piper, who flouts her father's rule about talking about the convicts ("You say [Al Capone's] name and hordes of reporters come crawling out of the woodwork ready to write stories full of foolish lies," the warden explains). At school, on the mainland, Piper hatches a scheme to make money from classmates ("Once in a lifetime opportunity! Get your clothes laundered by Al Capone and other world-famous public enemies!... Only costs 5 cents") and forces Moose to help her. Moose has reasons for staying on Piper's good side: his older sister, Natalie, has what would now be called autism, and Moose worries that her behavior will land the family in trouble with the warden. (Natalie's condition is so poorly understood that an expert tells her desperate mother, "An interesting case... you should consider donating her brain to science when she dies.") Choldenko captures the tense, nuanced family dynamics touched off by Natalie's disability as skillfully as she handles the mystique of Alcatraz and the exchanges between Moose and his friends. Fast-paced and memorable. Ages 10-up. (Mar.)

Reviewed on: 02/02/2004
Release date: 03/01/2004
Show other formats
FORMATS
Open Ebook - 240 pages - 978-1-4406-2963-1
Pre-Recorded Audio Player - 978-1-61657-054-5
Paperback - 384 pages - 978-957-570-818-4
Prebound-Sewn - 978-0-7569-7020-8
Open Ebook - 240 pages - 978-1-4295-8233-9
Peanut Press/Palm Reader - 240 pages - 978-1-4295-8234-6
Compact Disc - 5 pages - 978-0-307-58235-5
Paperback - 225 pages - 978-0-7475-6898-8
Hardcover - 248 pages - 978-1-4058-2279-4
Compact Disc - 978-0-307-58237-9
Downloadable Audio - 978-0-307-58238-6
Paperback - 340 pages - 978-89-509-2567-3
Prebound-Glued - 229 pages - 978-0-606-15263-1
Prebound-Sewn - 228 pages - 978-1-4177-3231-9
Paperback - 317 pages - 978-0-7862-8927-1
Hardcover - 317 pages - 978-0-7862-8043-8
Paperback - 225 pages
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-1-4025-6409-3
Paperback - 978-0-14-242999-0
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.