cover image How I Kept/U.S.Out/

How I Kept/U.S.Out/

Judi Miller. Yearling Books, $2.5 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-553-15522-8

Robbie, a fifth grader, has just arrived in London on a family vacation when he is carted away by kidnappers, who have mistaken him for Prince Rupert, the crown prince of Blichtenstein. Meanwhile, his parents blithely assume that Prince Rupert is their son. How these two look-alikes get back to their respective families is the subject of Robbie's essay on how he spent his summer vacation. That he keeps Blichtenstein and the U.S. from going to war is mostly imagined on his part; it is because he starts his story with ""It was a dark and stormy night'' that he gets marked down by his teacher. Sort of The Prince and the Preppie (the boys are wearing prep-school blazers when the mix-up occurs), this entertaining caper features an invented language for readers to dabble in. It's very funny and the source of much of this lively book's humor. Ages 8-12. (August)