Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Al Capone Shines My Shoes by Gennifer Choldenko

al One of the things I like the best about this sequel to Al Capone Does My Shirts is that things and people are rarely black and white, except in the end, of course.  Moose encounters lots of people in his life on Alcatraz Island in 1935: a mean guard, Officer Darby, who seems to have it in for him; Al Capone himself, who is calling in the favor Moose owes him from the previous book; Willy One Arm and Buddy Boy, two convicts that work at the warden’s house; Piper, the warden’s daughter, who Moose has a love/hate relationship with.  It’s hard for Moose to tell who he should trust.  HIs instincts are pretty good, but the thing that continues to get him in trouble is that he wants to make everyone happy.  His sister, Natalie is away at a special school on the mainland, and though everyone says it’s good for her, Moose isn’t too sure.  The conclusion of the book is very exciting, and involves guns, kidnapping, and an attempted prison escape.  Review by Stacy Church

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