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Guy Langman, Crime Scene Procrastinator Hardcover – March 13, 2012


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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 7-10-Teen boys will be drawn into Josh Berk's tale (Knopf, 2012) from the very first chapter. Guy Langman is a typical suburban teen, but his father recently died and he has a few unanswered questions. Rather than becoming saddled with morose introspection, he pokes fun at himself and shares his insecurities with humor and sarcasm. Guy joins a forensics club to meet hot girls, but also finds that some of his questions will be answered as he studies death in a scientific way. The story builds slowly in the beginning, but the engaging plot twists (especially toward the end) keep listeners hooked. When Guy experiences a home burglary, he has the opportunity put his forensic study into practice. During his forensic final, he encounters a real dead body, and eventually he connects these two crimes to his long-lost brother, Jacque. There are some touching moments, but these are not over-written or drawn out. Guy simply reflects on his situation and moves on. Much of the humor is a bit crude, but not offensive. Jim Meskimen delivers the self-effacing comments perfectly, and he doesn't create distracting girl voices. The book should not be sold as a mystery or forensic novel. It will be enjoyed by the same boys who loved Con Calame's Beat the Band (2010) and Swim the Fly (2009. both Candlewick).-Pamela Schembri, Newburgh Enlarged City Schools, NYα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

Review

Kirkus Reviews, January 15, 2012:
"Hilarious wit and serious gloom blend seamlessly as Guy wades through the year after his dad’s death...Guy’s running inner monologue is sharply observational, sardonic, funny and sad...Best friend Anoop and other peers are freshly unusual, not recycled character types."
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers; First Printing edition (March 13, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 037585701X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375857010
  • Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 0.9 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,465,253 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Josh Berk is the author of THE DARK DAYS OF HAMBURGER HALPIN (Knopf 2010), named a best book for teens of 2010 by Kirkus Reviews and Amazon.com. It was also awarded a Parent's Choice Silver medal, a starred review from School Library Journal, and a perfect 10 from VOYA. Reviewers called it witty, sardonic, delightful, and "a genre-bending breakthrough." (SLJ) His second comedy/mystery YA novel is GUY LANGMAN: CRIME SCENE PROCRASTINATOR (Knopf 2012). Kirkus says: "Hilarious wit and serious gloom blend seamlessly as Guy wades through the year after his dad's death..." Josh has also written a series of baseball-themed mysteries for younger readers. Look for STRIKE THREE, YOU'RE DEAD - the first in the "Lenny & The Mikes" series in 2013.

Josh has previously been a journalist, a poet, a playwright, and a guitarist (mostly in bands known for things other than fine guitar-playing). Visit www.joshberkbooks.com for more information or Twitter.com/joshberkbooks for too much information.

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By bookworm1858 VINE VOICE on March 25, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I have to start out by saying that I'm a native Pennsylvanian (Philadelphia suburbs) and therefore it is basically my birthright to disdain New Jersey. Not for any particular reason, just because. Thus upon seeing that this book is set in New Jersey, I may have sniffed a little-why would you set your book in the Jerz (note: this is what the narrator calls the state, not something I would ever come up with). Of course I kept reading wanting to give this book a fair shake and when I ended up literally laughing out loud on the third page, I knew I was hooked.

Admittedly I did have high hopes for this book because I thought the title sounded cool and I am interested in the science forensics although I don't watch many procedurals (Castle and The Mentalist are my go-tos). But once I clicked with the humor, I was caught. And that is the main thing; if you like the humor, you will enjoy this book. If you don't like it, then you probably will not.

Main character Guy Langman has just lost his father and is trying to cope with that while also trying to figure out girls (...good luck with that Guy!) and joining the new forensics club at school. He would rather be playing video games, taking bubble baths, and putting forth no effort whatsoever. Guy also indulges in some low humor with fart jokes, your mama jokes, and similar kinds springing from his mouth. While I don't think of myself as a fan of such humor, it turns out I may be wrong because I laughed at pretty much everything that could possibly be construed as humorous.

Oddly enough I thought the book went a bit downhill about halfway through when a plot seemed to emerge. First some valuable coins are stolen from Guy's house; then a boy who looks remarkably like him is found dead, possibly murdered.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By rebecca moe on March 13, 2012
Format: Hardcover
What a fun book! (Although it does perhaps give a little too much information about the thought process of teenage boys for those of us who aren't and never have been one to feel totally comfortable with. Especially if you work in close proximity to them every day and/or happen to live with one.) I didn't go into it expecting a big crime mystery (he is the crime scene procrastinator, after all) so I wasn't at all disappointed that the actual crime was such a small part of the book. Instead it was a witty, funny (again, teenage boy-style witty and funny, but still...) book about a boy who lost his father and is trying to figure out both his place in the world and how to cope with his mother's and his own grief. It had me laughing out loud one minute, cringing at his truly bad and tasteless jokes the next. I think every high school class out there has at least one Guy Langman in it, so anyone who's ever been to high school can identify with this book at least a little. Crime drama it isn't. Looking for a quirky coming-of-age story, though? Case closed.

(Though, honestly, do teenage boys really toss around all those "your mother" jokes? As the mother of a teenage boy, it's more than a little disconcerting....)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mary@BookSwarm VINE VOICE on July 12, 2012
Format: Hardcover
From the title, you can tell this is probably going to be funny. If you know Josh Berk, he is quite a funny guy with translates over to his novels. And, you'd be right.

Guy Langman is, yes, a procrastinator. (Been there, feel your pain, buddy. It never goes away!) Holy cow, this boy reminds me of way too many of the guys in my acquaintance (as a high school teacher, I know many...*shudder* high school boys are a breed of their own!) and it's a little scary when we get to delve into Guy's thought processes. Now, I think I know too much about teen boys and how they think. (As if I didn't think that before.)

The mystery in this book isn't very deep or complex but, again, this is a teen boy with a procrastination problem we're talking about. However, I didn't really go into this book expecting The Hardy Boys. Guy's dealing with the death of his father (a HUGE character and just one of those really big personalities who take over a room when they walk in) and trying to figure out what's going on in his life, where he wants to be, and where he belongs.

Humorous and touching, this novel is a fast dive into the dark corners of a teen guy's thought processes. *double shudder*
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Love2Knit on August 16, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I listened to the audiobook. This novel was very entertaining & laughed often at Guy's situations. The characters were interesting & had depth.

As a middle school teacher, I always consider using books that are captivating & funny as read-alouds for my class at school. Unfortunately, I can't use this one because of the boner jokes. The language was clean and I know teens (ages 12 to 17) would love this novel.

Guy Langman, Crime Scene Procratinator has some lessons to teach about life, what is important, and how to treat others. I plan to read more of Josh Berk's books.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By JMW Plantation on July 12, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Like his first book, Josh Berk has written an engaging humorous novel. Young Adults should love it. I am older and loved every word and every character.
The author is very creative, and makes the most of his ingenuity. If you have not read his first book Hamburger Halpin, it is available , I notice from Amazon, and I heartily suggest it. While I love this book, his first book was really memorable and the characters unforgettable.
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