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The Body of Christopher Creed Paperback – November 1, 2008

4.3 out of 5 stars 136 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

The often-tortured class weirdo has disappeared, leaving an enigmatic note on the school library computer. Is he a runaway, a suicide, a murder victim?

Sixteen-year-old Torey Adams and his friends remember beating up Chris Creed when his gentle but obnoxious ways exasperated them. Now that he is gone, they joke uneasily about him to ease their guilt. The town is full of ugly rumors, as Torey's lawyer mother tells them "See, guys, this is what happens when a kid suffers a personal tragedy. Nobody wants to take responsibility. Nobody wants to admit they had a part in it. So, they spend a lot of time pointing the finger, and things just get worse and worse." Suspicion of murder conveniently falls on big, tough Bo Richardson, an outcast "boon" from the boondocks edge of town. Torey's smug assumptions about people are rattled when he discovers that his childhood friend Ali is secretly romantically involved with Bo, who displays surprising tenderness and maturity in caring for her.

The three try to solve the mystery of Chris's disappearance by attempting to steal his diary, but only succeed in implicating themselves, as the town is consumed with rumors and the revelation of adult secrets. Torey begins to find himself distanced from his other friends by his growing understanding of the importance of compassion toward those who are different. The Body of Christopher Creed challenges teens to think about the damage done when lines of exclusion are drawn between people. (Ages 12 and older) --Patty Campbell

From Publishers Weekly

First-novelist Plum-Ucci wraps a well-crafted mystery around a topical issue: the effect teenage intolerance can have on misfits. When class freak Chris Creed suddenly disappears, his fellow students are not so much worried but abuzz with speculation: Is he a runaway, a suicide, a crime victim? Through a complicated but believable turn of events, narrator Torey Adams, a popular 16-year-old, starts to feel some concern and resolves to find the truth. His unlikely allies are two kids of dubious social status: Ali, who is Chris's neighbor, and Ali's boyfriend, Bo, a "boon" (shorthand for boondocks) with a juvenile record. Convinced Chris's mother is to blame for Chris's disappearance, they plan to break into his house to steal his hidden diary in hopes of finding evidence. The plan backfires: Bo is caught, Torey is implicated and all three are the subject of malicious gossip that proves to have dangerous consequences. Told as a flashback, the novel drags slightly at the beginning. Plum-Ucci, however, picks up the pace and builds to a fever pitch near the conclusion, vividly describing Torey's late-night hunt for Chris's body in a nearby Indian burial ground. Readers will likely be enthralled by the mystery, and, even more, they will be moved by Torey's hard-won realization that everyone deserves compassion. Ages 12-up.
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Paperback: 276 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers; 1 edition (November 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0152063862
  • ISBN-13: 978-0152063863
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.6 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (136 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #220,454 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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on March 28, 2004
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