I've watched Chenowyth devour several of Roberts' books, and i wondered what the attraction was for a twelve year old. Now i know. There is suspense, as Joel Bishop's best enemy is kidnapped, within Joel's view, and he struggles to make the adults around him believe that something actually happened. There are a good couple of twists to the plot, as...i can't tell you what. There are believeable characters, including a pair of hard policemen; well-observed, well portrayed. For a young reader, this is probably just the right level of complexity, frustration with adults, exposure to evil, and certainty of a happy ending. No wonder Chen adores these and checks the "R" section every time we visit the library.