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Mojo Hardcover – April 9, 2013

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers; First Edition edition (April 9, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375864458
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375864452
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #959,524 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 7-10-Dylan is literally thrown into a murder mystery when a group of thugs tosses him into a Dumpster and he lands next to Hector Maldonado, whom he recognizes from school, but just barely, as Hector Maldonado is very much dead. He has barely brushed off the garbage when wealthy teen Ashton Browning's disappearance hits the news, and when her father offers a $100,000 reward for information leading to her return, Dylan decides to find his mojo by putting on his detective cap to see what he can dig up. Along with his punky friend Audrey and girl-crazy sidekick Randy, Dylan attempts to infiltrate Gangland, an after-hours club of sorts run by the well-to-do teens from Hollister, the private school Ashton and her brother attend. While Audrey is quick to see through the overtly fake gestures of friendship that the Hollister kids offer up, Dylan just doesn't get it, and it takes an inordinate amount of obvious hints for him to figure out that the rich kid crew might be more invested in emulating the famous gangsters, whose pics hang on Gangland's walls, than he'd realized. Tharp's cast of characters consists mainly of savvy teens, except Dylan, whose obliviousness veers toward irritating, and at times can make the plot lag. The comic-book worthy conclusion, however, wherein the villain gets her due and the good guys walk off with a year's worth of free burgers, makes for an exciting end to an at times slow-moving plot.-Joanna Sondheim, Columbia Grammar & Preparatory School, New York Cityα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

Chubby 16-year-old Dylan isn’t exactly the school newspaper’s star investigative reporter—until fate plops two big mysteries right into his lap. Mystery number one: while evading bullies, Dylan leaps into a Dumpster, only to find a dead schoolmate, Hector. Mystery number two: a pretty 17-year-old rich girl named Ashton has disappeared, and it’s Dylan who stumbles across her discarded shoe. Solving this latter crime ought to give him everything: “I wanted the reward, the fame, the mojo.” Like any smart crime writer, Tharp (The Spectacular Now, 2008) stirs up a whole swarm of suspects. Could it be Trix, the sexy lesbian who has taken an interest in Dylan’s female best buddy? What about Beto, Hector’s too-helpful cousin? Or how about the wealthy Nash, Ashton’s ex-boyfriend who runs Gangland, a teen party space that hosts a series of increasingly unsavory competitions within its private walls? There isn’t a lot to differentiate Dylan from other teen gumshoes, but Tharp flexes his plotline like an old pro, right down to the juicy criminal-explains-all resolution. A savory morsel for mystery gnashers. Grades 8-11. --Daniel Kraus

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Lisa Pottgen on April 17, 2013
Format: Hardcover
I had applied a while back for the Ambuzzador Program through RandomBuzzers, a division of Random House, not expecting anything and not even knowing what book would be coming if I was selected. So when Mojo showed up in my mailbox, I had to do some serious backtracking to figure out where it had come from.

I really had no idea what to expect when I read the book. It didn't seem like my usual kind of book, but I entered into it with a very open mind. I had a few false starts, having started reading the book when I first got it, and then setting it aside for some books with more pressing deadlines. I picked the book up again a few days ago and read through it completely. It was nothing like what I expected and yet, completely and totally blew me away.

I am giving it four stars only because there were a few scenes that are just a little too far fetched for me. I mean, realistically, what would you do if you landed in a dumpster next to a dead body? Would you be able to remain calm and stay there trying to hide from the dudes chasing you? Because let me tell you, I would have completely crapped my pants and screamed like the girl I am.

The characters, though, for the most part were believable and well rounded, fitting in with the story line well. With one notable exception. Randy really bugged me and I am not sure why. Something about him just seemed. Irritating and annoying. Maybe I have a bias against characters who serve no purpose other than to run their mouths and cause drama. Maybe that is my issue and I should not take it out on authors. But lets be honest, if we have a character in a book that bugs us, it is going to affect how we feel about the book, right? I am not alone in this, am I?

But the storyline was awesome.
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By rroberts_tx on August 29, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The author has hit it out of the park with his latest teen novel (and is my favorite so far). Dylan, a chubby teen investigative school reporter, and his ragtag posse (Randy, Audrey, and Trix) literally fall into the world of the wealthy and beautiful to find a missing girl. The group has lived in the shadows most of their lives but band together for a worthy cause that changes their lives forever. They encounter the deceptive world of teens who have too much time and money on their hands. This is a wonderful page-turner that kept me reading late into the night. Enjoy!
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Format: Hardcover
A likeable kid in search of his "mojo" also gets caught up in a search for a missing girl in Tim Tharp's suspenseful, thoughtful novel MOJO.

Dylan Jones is the kind of guy who doesn't realize how good he has it. Sure, he attends a second-rate public school in Omaha, Nebraska. And he's carrying around a few extra pounds. And he only really has two friends --- Randy and Audrey. But what Dylan's convinced he really lacks is mojo, which he defines as "Juice. Pull. Clout. Respect." But how is he going to find this elusive mojo?

His friend Audrey suggests that Dylan, an aspiring journalist, could get involved with the investigation into the disappearance of a local girl, Ashton Browning. After all, Dylan --- who at the novel's opening finds a dead body in a dumpster --- seems to have a knack for being in (sort of) the right place at the right time.

When Dylan joins a search party at the park where Ashton was last seen and discovers the missing girl's running shoe, he's off on a quest unlike anything he would have imagined. Ashton attended the local private school, and her friends include people with names like Rowan, Nash and Aisling. Some of these people take a very particular interest in Dylan, and before long, he's involved in a world of limousines and private clubs, of pseudo gangster warfare and designer clothes.

Dylan's surprised that these jet-setters want to be his friend, but he's not as skeptical as his old friends Randy and Audrey. Can Dylan avoid distractions and temptation long enough to solve the mystery of the missing girl? Will he be able to find connections between this kidnapping and the earlier murder? And will he remember who his real friends are...before it's too late?
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