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The Switch Paperback – February 4, 2010
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From School Library Journal
Grade 5–8—A twist of fate is the premise behind this story of riches, street urchins, and criminals. Tad Spencer, 13, is used to getting what he wants from his indulgent yet inattentive parents. One day, he wakes up as Bob Snarby—poor, hungry, dirty, living in squalor—the son of carnival workers. The story is entertaining but the characterizations of Tad's parents are uneven and contradictory. Also, the level of violence, including mass murder, makes the book sound heavy, but it isn't. It's a fun, tongue-in-cheek read that will captivate children who like adventure and mystery. Tad struggles throughout to make sense of his new life and to return to his old one. The discoveries that he makes about himself and the people surrounding him allow him to realize that his old life perhaps is not what he thought it was, and he discovers that life is only as good as you make it.—Margaret Auguste, Franklin Middle School, Somerset, NJ
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Horowitz’s full-scale assault on the attentions of middle-grade boys continues with this tale of swapped identity. Tad Spencer, a rich kid with little to complain about, one night wishes he was someone else. When he awakes the next morning, he finds his wish has come true. Much to his dismay, though, he’s switched places with Bob Snarby, the son of two slovenly carnival workers, and soon falls into the life of an uneducated miscreant. He eventually discovers that his old family’s wealth is built on the abhorrent practices of his father’s so-called “charity,” and sets out to take down the empire. There’s a knowing wink at one point in case readers happen to be familiar with the classic film Trading Places. While Horowitz won’t be accused of subtlety in either character or plot here, like that film there are a few underhanded elements of social satire that creep in alongside the more obvious condemnation of rampant greed. Mostly, though, Horowitz’s name-brand promise of cartoonish action will attract his audience, and they’ll be mostly pleased with this foray. Grades 5-8. --Ian Chipman --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top customer reviews
Tad Spencer is a rich spoilt fat kid, his father loved by the world has been made a knight by the Queen and is one of the richest and most successful businessmen in the world. Tad like any spoilt brat doesn't appreciate what he's got and when he doesn't get what he wants one night makes a wish that he was someone else. Unfortunately for Tad a shooting star in some far off place just happened to be in the throws of a final burst before burning out completely and his wish is granted. Tad wakes up in a caravan in a new body and soon learns he has become the white trash criminal delinquent Bob Snarby. He desperately wants to return to his old life but when he finally gets back to his old house he sees his former body which houses the personality of Bob who he now lives in. Bob of course has no desire to let on that what has happened and the terror for Tad is about to reach new heights as he learns the horrible truth about the Spencer fortune along the way.
Those purchasing this novel to read on a flight have the added bonus that the silver cover is very shiny so if you crash you can use The Switch to reflect the sun and signal rescuers.
Those who also read adult fiction should check out Horowitz's great novel The Killing Joke as well!
Not only had the former inhabitant of this body, Bob Snarby, lived on the edge most of his life, he was also dangerously intertwined with corruption and crime, activities that Tad seemed to have little choice but to undertake. What follows is a hair-raising quest for Tad to protect himself from harm and solve the mystery behind the body switch. Along the way he has some surprising revelations about the vulgarity of his former lifestyle and of his parents' actions.
Clearly wrapped into the story line from start to finish are a set of interesting economics themes, including the dichotomy between wealth and poverty, the role of incentives in motivating behavior, and the importance of ethical standards in doing good business. While references to drug use and murder make the book less appropriate for younger readers, The Switch will certainly satisfy readers who have come to expect engrossing, action-packed adventures from Anthony Horowitz.
“Because me and your father are going on a 2 day holiday to the Cotswolds and we haven't got enough money for you to come with us.“explained Adams mum.
“Why can't I have a sleep over at jacks or oskars house,“ said Adam desperately trying to find a way out “It would be a lot more fun