Books by Wendelin Van Draanen

SAMMY KEYES AND THE KILLER CRUISE by Wendelin Van Draanen
Released: Sept. 10, 2013

"Van Draanen's latest tale combines a fresh adventure and diverting mystery with a heartfelt storyline that enriches the series. (Mystery. 10-14)"
A celebratory cruise leads to mischief and mystery for Sammy as she embarks upon a memorable journey. Read full book review >
SAMMY KEYES AND THE SHOWDOWN IN SIN CITY by Wendelin Van Draanen
Released: Jan. 8, 2013

"Sammy's hijinks and a surprisingly poignant ending make this a captivating addition to the series. (Mystery. 10-14)"
Thirteen-year-old Sammy has a habit of uncovering mysteries and finding trouble. Read full book review >
THE RUNNING DREAM by Wendelin Van Draanen
FICTION
Released: Jan. 11, 2011

"A lively and lovely story. (Fiction. 12 & up)"
A girl learns to run again in this inspirational story of recovery from a terrible accident and from insensitivity. Read full book review >
THE GREATEST POWER by Wendelin Van Draanen
ADVENTURE
Released: May 26, 2009

"Written with gleeful wit, rapid-fire pacing and snappy dialogue and accompanied by Gilpin's comical pen-and-ink illustrations, this second volume's conclusion promises a forthcoming, deliciously dastardly installment. (Fiction. 7-12)"
This follow-up to the first Gecko and Sticky (The Villain's Lair, 2009) adventure delivers even more wacky dealings with the devilish evildoer Damien Black and his band of ne'er-do-wells, The Bandito Brothers. Read full book review >
VILLAIN’S LAIR by Wendelin Van Draanen
ADVENTURE
Released: Feb. 10, 2009

"A dastardly good read that benefits from its quirky drawings and may well become a can't-wait-for-the-next-one series. (Fantasy. 8-12)"
A wittily offbeat and action-packed adventure. Read full book review >
CONFESSIONS OF A SERIAL KISSER by Wendelin Van Draanen
FICTION
Released: May 13, 2008

"A complex but not entirely satisfying examination of female empowerment and growing up, it's a good introduction for younger teens just starting to grapple with these weighty issues. (Fiction. 12-16)"
Is it possible to go on a kissing spree and emerge with your heart—and reputation—intact? Read full book review >
RUNAWAY by Wendelin Van Draanen
FICTION
Released: Sept. 12, 2006

"Readers will be relieved when Holly finally finds a way to ask for help—and receives it. (Fiction. 10-14)"
Holly is a remarkably articulate 12-year-old runaway, orphaned by her mother's overdose and hardened by a series of unsuccessful placements in foster homes. Read full book review >
SHREDDERMAN: MEET THE GECKO by Wendelin Van Draanen
ADVENTURE
Released: Jan. 11, 2005

"Cyber-hero fun for everyone, and, of course, future installments are on the way. (Fiction. 7-11)"
Fifth-grade math prodigy Nolan Byrd and his secret identity—Internet Superhero Shredderman—returns for a third adventure. Read full book review >
SHREDDERMAN: ATTACK OF THE TAGGER by Wendelin Van Draanen
ADVENTURE
Released: Aug. 10, 2004

"Equipped with a genuinely juvenile sense of humor (but a clear sense of right and wrong, too), plus a serious addiction to exclamation points, this engagingly bright, complex fifth-grade sleuth will sweep readers into his newest jet-propelled adventure. (Illustrations not seen) (Fiction. 8-11)"
Self-styled "cyber-superhero" Nolan Byrd once again wields digital camera and Web site in defense of truth, justice, and just deserts for bullies. Read full book review >
SHREDDERMAN: SECRET IDENTITY by Wendelin Van Draanen
ADVENTURE
Released: Feb. 10, 2004

"They should get an enthusiastic welcome. (Fiction. 8-10)"
In a Sammy Keyes for younger readers, Van Draanen opens a new series featuring a fifth-grade math wiz with this quick-paced take on the perennial "dealing with a bully" theme. Read full book review >
SWEAR TO HOWDY by Wendelin Van Draanen
ADVENTURE
Released: Oct. 14, 2003

"A change of place, but not pace, for the author of the Sammy Keyes dramas. (Fiction. 10-12)"
Triumph and tragedy mix in a compelling country tale of boys being boys. Read full book review >
SAMMY KEYES AND THE ART OF DECEPTION by Wendelin Van Draanen
FICTION
Released: April 8, 2003

"Still, thoughtful readers will understand from Sammy's anguish, when she sees a work of art that had moved her profoundly destroyed by its larcenous owner, that there are moral felonies at least as wicked as the more conventional legal kind. (Fiction. 11-15)"
Shenanigans take a back seat to affairs of the heart in this teenaged Sherlock's eighth outing. Read full book review >
SAMMY KEYES AND THE SEARCH FOR SNAKE EYES by Wendelin Van Draanen
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: May 14, 2002

The navel-ring generation's Nancy Drew gears up for another all-out dash into peril that begins at a video arcade in the mall, and almost ends in a boarded-up basement, looking down the barrel of a gun. Read full book review >
FLIPPED by Wendelin Van Draanen
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: Oct. 1, 2001

"It is, nevertheless, a highly agreeable romantic comedy tempered with the pointed lesson (demonstrated by the straining of Bryce's parents' marriage) that the "choices you make now will affect you for the rest of your life." (Fiction. 10-14)"
Proof that the course of pubescent love never runs smooth. Read full book review >
SAMMY KEYS AND THE HOLLYWOOD MUMMY by Wendelin Van Draanen
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: Feb. 1, 2001

"Sammy's sixth high-energy whodunit keeps up the breathless pace of its predecessors, and by the end, Sammy has gone a long way toward forgiving Lana for deserting her. (Fiction. 11-13)"
With doughty sidekick Marissa in tow, resourceful, fast-talking Sammy sets out for Tinsel Town, to pay a surprise visit to her wayward, star-struck mother, Lana. Read full book review >
SAMMY KEYES AND THE SKELETON MAN by Wendelin Van Draanen
FICTION
Released: Aug. 1, 1998

"Sammy is as resourceful and tough as ever, and the breathless pace of this adventure will rivet readers from page one. (Fiction. 10-12)"
The live-wire young sleuth who debuted in Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief (p. 502) catapults into another headlong caper after scotching a murder attempt on Halloween. Read full book review >
SAMMY KEYES AND THE HOTEL THIEF by Wendelin Van Draanen
FICTION
Released: April 1, 1998

"Children will admire Sammy's inadvertent genius for ruffling feathers as much as they'll like her sharp powers of observation and deduction; she is a tough new gumshoe with another caper scheduled for fall. (Fiction. 10-13)"
PLB 0-679-98839-4 Van Draanen (How I Survived Being a Girl, 1997) debuts a live-wire young sleuth in this nonstop whodunit. Read full book review >
HOW I SURVIVED BEING A GIRL by Wendelin Van Draanen
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: March 31, 1997

"Blithely entertaining. (Fiction. 8-11)"
 Van Draanen's first book has a crackling pace, funny lines, and an iron-willed heroine with a knack for putting herself in the center of all the action. Read full book review >