Booklist Issue: April 15, 2013
Back before Dark.
Shoemaker, Tim (Author)
Mar 2013. 376 p. Zonderkidz, hardcover, $14.99. (9780310734994)
The trap that begins this strong follow-up to the excellent Code of Silence (2012) is sickeningly smart. Friends Cooper, Hiro, and Lunk watch in shock as their pal Gordy hails a van to tell the driver that there’s a backpack on the roof. But it is a lure; the side door slides open, Gordy is tazed, and the van vanishes with him. The authorities are clueless, so the guilt-ridden friends start taking their own investigative steps, each riskier than the last. Shoemaker’s third-person voice gives us each kid’s perspective, including Gordy, who is chained in a pitch-black, slowly flooding basement. We also get glimpses of the kidnapper, who views the whole thing as a game before it spirals out of control. As with the first book, multiple characters’ prayers feel awkwardly inserted, and there is a certain amount of repetition spread across the perhaps too many chapters. Still, Shoemaker’s characters and plot possess a believability rare for YA mysteries. And the climax? You will not have any fingernails left by the final page.
— Daniel Kraus
Telling the Truth Could Get Them Killed. Remaining Silent Could Be Worse.
When Cooper, Hiro, and Gordy witness a robbery that leaves a man in a coma, they find themselves tangled in a web of mystery and deceit that threatens their lives. After being seen by the criminals—who may also be cops—Cooper makes everyone promise never to reveal what they have seen. Telling the truth could kill them. But remaining silent means an innocent man takes the fall and a friend never receives justice.
Is there ever a time to lie? And what happens when the truth is dangerous?
The three friends, trapped in a code of silence, must face the consequences of choosing right or wrong when both options have their price. - from Amazon.com
Code of Silence Series
Code of Silence:
Code of Silence, by Tim Shoemaker
Code of Silence: Book 1
Mystery, adventure, ages 9-12
Slush Pile: A publishing industry term referring to the "pile" of manuscript submissions an editor has on his or her desk (and inbox) at any given time, typically unsolicited and unagented.
Complete the series with Books 2 and 3!
Includes reviews from School Library Journal, Booklist Review, and The Dove Foundation