- € 8,49
They can rule the half-pipe, but can they survive this?
Jimmy, David, and Henry are psyched. It's summer, school's out, and they are on their way to California, where they will be able to do some major skating. But on the plane, the unthinkable happens: They are hijacked by terrorists. As frightened as they may be, they take action and they succeed. Sort of. They may have beaten the terrorists, but now their plane has crashed in the middle of nowhere and all of a sudden, their summer vacation is about finding food, shelter, and a rescue. Can three normal twelve-year-old boys find a way to get by without fast food and skate parks?
Gutman's (The Homework Machine) dedication to this loopy tale thanks Gary Paulsen for writing Hatchet, the novel Julia reads as she flies cross-country with her older brother, narrator Jimmy, and his pals Henry and David, all three of whom are fanatical skateboarders. Also on board are a group of elderly women en route to a knitting convention. When terrorists hijack the plane and kill the pilot and copilot, the kids and the knitters spring into action and manage to overcome the hijackers (one of whom Jimmy knocks out with his skateboard). Henry, who once had a flying lesson, takes the controls and crash lands the plane in a forest. The youngsters, a feisty octogenarian and a flight attendant are the only survivors. Julia calls on her Girl Scout skills to orchestrate building a fire, searching for water and foraging for food. Meanwhile, Jimmy's skateboard is used to help ignite a fire, kill a snake and trap a rabbit. Banal banter abounds: when they don clothes they find in the deceased knitters' luggage, the flight attendant jestingly wonders if Henry's dress "makes him look fat" and Henry asks if "Dominoes delivers out here?" Capping the inanity, the boys fashion a halfpipe from the fuselage and ask the Canadian Mountie who rescues them to wait while they skateboard. Back home, the survivors learn they have prevented the hijackers from flying the jet into the U.S. Capitol and are heralded as heroes. As an adventure, this really never takes off. As a farce, it crashes. Ages 8-12.