- Age Range: 9 - 12 years
- Grade Level: 4 - 6
- Lexile Measure: 860 (What's this?)
- Hardcover: 416 pages
- Publisher: Feiwel & Friends (October 27, 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0312626002
- ISBN-13: 978-0312626006
- Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1.4 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 46 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #406,656 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Boy Who Knew Everything Hardcover – October 27, 2015
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From School Library Journal
Gr 5–8—The long-awaited follow-up to The Girl Who Could Fly (Feiwel & Friends, 2008) finds Piper ("the girl who could fly") and Conrad ("the boy who knew everything") living in relative calm on Piper's family farm. Some time has passed since they and their fellow exceptional children escaped Dr. Hellion's prison of a school, yet the calm lasts only briefly as a few disparate events quickly unfold and turn everything upside down. In quick succession, the near death of Piper's beloved father, his father's election to the presidency, and a successful experiment in time-bending spurs Conrad to finally step up as leader of their band of misfit children. Under Conrad's tutelage, the kids carry out anonymous goodwill missions in response to fishy "natural" disasters. Yet their mission proves far from straightforward. Who is behind these disasters? Is there indeed a secret place where exceptional kids are free to be themselves? As in its predecessor, this installment straddles the real and the imagined. At times, this blend coalesces beautifully, but often it proves a bit clunky. The folksy colloquialisms uttered by Piper and her parents still feel out of place, leaving readers a little unsettled as to the setting. Its greatest strength emerges when the tale balances quiet moments of self-realization, identity, and friendship with an action-packed plot. VERDICT Fans of The Girl Who Could Fly will embrace this sequel.—Jill Heritage Maza, Montclair Kimberley Academy, Montclair, NJ
“The sequel to the best-selling The Girl Who Could Fly centers on Piper's friend Conrad Harrington, son of the soon-to-be president, whose special talent is that he is smarter than the average genius. Now living happily on Piper's family's farm, he is willing to let the bad times go, but, not surprisingly, trouble finds them both . . . What keeps this centered . . . is the firm friendship of Piper and Conrad.” ―Booklist
Top customer reviews
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Be sure to get both of them and read them in order.
I read The Girl Who Could Fly when I was 11 and have read it four or five times since. It has made me cry EVERY time. It was so refreshing, full of hope and courage, and I loved each and every one of the characters. I've been DYING for a sequel for YEARS. After all, who is J really?? What's the safe place? Will they get there? I think that provided a really excellent framework for a very necessary sequel. And yet, next to none of my expectations were fulfilled by this book!!
One of the things I love about Victoria Forester is her seemingly simple writing style that still has beautifully engaging characters and depth. Piper's evolution over the course of the first story was sweet and true to life. The other characters- Kimber, Smitty, Myrtle, Violet, Boris, Jasper, Lily, and most especially Conrad, never faded into the background. So here are my issues with the sequel.
1. Dr Hellion....WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU??? She used to be perfect!! Delusional, control freak, secretly terrified of anything that deviated from the norm while maintaining a beautiful facade of kindness and understanding, up to the very end. Aside from Piper, she kind of made the story for me. Her death was perfect!! And now SHE'S BACK? That has got to be the sleaziest, cheapest, most off handed move ever! Dr Hellion's day is gone! Sure it was great while it lasted, but Letitia fell off a CLIFF. No one comes back from that. It was never explained exactly how Max saved her. Furthermore, I have zero faith in her "Transformation" - she was literally unhinged and off her rocker. She needed a psychiatrist!! Her change of heart is completely unfounded!!
2. Max. UGGGHH MAX! Why does this character exist? There was NO need for him, and even if there was, the way he was introduced halfway through the story felt completely patched up. The whole charm of the story is these kids have super powers no one else has. They are extraordinary in the world of the ordinary, the "normal," and they are fighting to find others like themselves and never give it up. The introduction of "immortal" or "godly" characters just rips the context of their struggles apart and throws it out of the window! Max should not exist within the fabric of this story! Honestly he was such, such a weak character in so many counts. Half the time I was ridiculously confused and the other time groaning at his shallow storyline.
3. Piper and Conrad. Let me say, Conrad was WONDERFUL for about the first half of the book. The opening teaser had me cheering. Conrad is back! Yes! But towards the second half of the book, his brilliance, his shrewdness completely dissipated. He seemed like a normal kid. Also...why would Conrad wear a supercomputer that if tampered with could cause brain damage? Isn't that an incredibly high risk? Aren't there too many variables for possible damage to occur? Such a unConrad thing to do! It's like wearing a knife in your pocket without a sheaf-sit down too hard and it'll stab your thigh!
As for Piper, no she wasn't awful, thank goodness. But I still feel like Piper was more of 14 or something here. She seemed to have matured waaaaayyy too much in the space of the previous book and now. How?
4. Xenotopia or whatever the heck it's called. What is it exactly? Is it a safe place? Is it a utopia? Is it an evil utopia? Should they all go live there or nah? The purpose of Xenotopia felt vague in the extreme and every time one of the characters started flapping their mouths about it, BOOM! Instant fantasy history lesson. Whyyyyy?
5. Conrad's dad. Another great character from book 1. I think it's an excellent idea bringing him back. But......
Rewriting his entire characterization from the original story arch on the basis of a magical rock necklace that was secretly controlling him is WEAK. Even worse than Hellion "surviving" the fall from the cliff. He was a bad dad. Bad dads exist. Period.
Overall the 1st half of the book was pretty good. Then about halfway.......it all went to pieces!! Characters, places, events that had zero relation to anything I was *mildly* interested in, came popping out of the woodwork! It just did not feel tied together at all and the ending just dropped off.
furthermore, things got EXTREMELY dark very quickly in the second half. Another lazy tactic to make things engaging. Piper zipping through lava and getting struck by lightning multiple times? A 12 year old girl? And making it out practically conscious? Not to mention the very nasty imagery blooming in mind if she HAD fallen into the lava. Not to mention a range of other things- Max's nastier, but still BORING, plans for humanity. I wasn't cheering for Piper in her battles because nothing was at stake.
Even worse....is this a trilogy? Why-does-YA-fiction-always-have-to be-A TRILOGY!!! There just- there's no need for it! There WASN'T any need for it. Obviously now with the severe lack of closure, we do kinda need a conclusion. ARRGGH!
Most recent customer reviews
There are two main characters, their names are Piper Mcloud and Conrad Harrington lll.Read more