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Read online or Download Zach's Lie (Full PDF ebook with essay, research paper)
by Roland Smith

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5.25(w) x 7.87(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range:
10 - 14 Years



Jack Osborne's life changes forever the night men in masks break into his house, threaten Jack and his family, and ransack their home. Jack then discovers the reason these men have come into their lives-his father has been arrested for drug trafficking.

Jack, his mother, and his sister are then forced to enter Witness Security Program. Jack becomes "Zach" and moves to Elko, Nevada, a town in the middle of nowhere. There he meets Sam, the strangest school custodian he has ever encountered, and Catalin, a girl who might make Zach's uprooting worth the trouble. But just as Zach finally begins to piece together a new life, he finds himself in danger again-and this time his actions could determine the fates of everyone he cares about.

Editorial Reviews

How does a 7th-grader cope with two identity changes in just a few months without serious adjustment problems? Jack Osborne, alias Zach Granger, alias Mack Greene, manages to pull it off with a maturity that belies his years. On the day that three masked strangers invade the Osborne household and terrorize Jack, his sister Joanne, and their mother, Jack's life is changed forever. His father's involvement in drug smuggling in South America, a situation he later admits was the result of financial problems, has sent his family's life spinning out of control. The father is committed to the Federal Detention Center, and Jack, now Zach Granger, is forced to change his physical appearance, give up his friends, and begin a whole new life under the Federal Witness Protection Program. When Zach meets Sam Sebesta, the enigmatic custodian of his new school, he fears that Sam's interest in him might lead to an unwitting revelation about his past. As events unfold, and the criminals come closer to discovering the Grangers' true identity, Sam's intriguing past enables him to devise a rapid solution that saves the family from certain harm. A jealous schoolmate's theft of Zach's journal ultimately leads the drug criminals to the Grangers' new home. However, Sam rescues a single journal entry written by Zach's father, a discovery that becomes critical in the capture of the smuggling cartel. The timing of both incidents gives this novel a good measure of suspense, and the reader will be caught up in a vicarious fear for the family's safety. Because the criminal network is so vast, the Osborne family is forced to begin anew in yet another location. Zach, now Mack Greene, especially regrets leaving Catalin,the girl who has been his romantic interest, but this sacrifice pales in significance when his father is released from prison and rejoins the family for good. This high-interest novel has enough teen issues to satisfy even the most reluctant readers. The themes of trust and betrayal, family loyalty, loss, friendship and first romance will make it highly interesting to YAs. KLIATT Codes: J—Recommended for junior high school students. 2001, Hyperion, 211p., Ages 12 to 15.
—Phyllis Lamontagne

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