________________ CM . . . . Volume XIX Number 40 . . . . June 14, 2013



Gordon Korman.
New York, NY., Scholastic Press (Distributed in Canada by Scholastic Canada), 2013.
275 pp., hardcover & EBK, $18.99 (hc.).
ISBN 978-0-545-44866-6 (pbk.), 978-0-545-52018-8 (EBK).

Grades 5-7 / Ages 10-12.

Review by Tanya Boudreau.

*** /4



"That's even worse!" Savannah exclaimed in horror. "Do you know what happens to a dog who attacks a human? He gets put down because he's vicious! Luthor's not vicious; he wouldn't hurt a fly!"

"Face it, Savannah," said Ben quietly. "He would hurt a fly. I mean, I like him, too. But he would hurt a whole swarm of flies."

Griffin was finding Savannah's anger contagious. "Swindle!" he spat. "I never thought that guy would have the nerve to show his face in Cedarville again! You think he cares whether Luthor likes him or not? Forget it! To him, a famous dog is no different than a Babe Ruth card-money in the bank."

"Can't your parents appeal the judge's decision?" Ben asked Savannah. "On TV, that kind of case stretches for years."

Hideout is Korman's fifth book starring Luthor, the much-loved Doberman. Swindle, Luthor's former owner, is back in town, and he wants revenge. He blames Griffin Bing and his gang of friends for ruining his life. To earn the money he thinks he deserves, he plans to sell Luthor to the highest bidder. A court order allows him to take Luthor away from Savannah, his present owner, but he'll have to find Luthor first. Griffin and his friends help Savannah hide the 150 pound dog until they find evidence that Savannah is the legal owner of the dog. There are three hideouts in this story, with each involving a different themed camp. At Camp Ta-Da (drama camp), Melissa and Logan each impress a Hollywood star with their impromptu stage performances while ensuring the dog stays hidden in an attic above the stage. Camp Ebony is where Griffin and Savannah have to keep Luthor hidden from two possible dognappers a fellow camper and a man supposedly working for a research institute. During his time at this camp, Luthor saves a life and helps reveal the identity of the "mechanical monster". Luthor is shuffled to Camp Endless Pines, an adventure camp, when Swindle and his partner close-in on his location. While Pitch is tracking down Luthor's dognappers, she becomes the hero when she uncovers important documents that prove Savannah is Luthor's true owner. The six friends reconvene near the end of the story when Luthor needs all their help, and they do succeed, with their relieved parents looking on with admiration.

      This humorous series will appeal to both girls and boys. It's fast paced, full of action, and the characters are quirky, but well-rounded. Although the books are part of a series, they can each be read as a stand-alone.

Highly Recommended.

Tanya Boudreau is a librarian at the Cold Lake Public Library in Cold Lake, AB.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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