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Henry Hooper loves junk. When Henry finds an innocent-looking leg from a fashion dummy, he is thrown into a real-life thriller. The local thugs are very interested in the leg too, and seem prepared to stop at nothing to get it back.
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Grade 4-7 Henry Hooper, 13, collects junk as a way to avoid confronting the pain he feels after his father leaves home for another woman. But when he picks up the leg of a discarded manni kin, he suddenly realizes that he is at tracting attention from a gang of street thugs who had previously ignored him. Henry's mother decides to take on a boarder, Noreen, who becomes Hen ry's confidante. Henry gives the leg to Noreen to use in an art show, but the thieves steal it, and by the time Henry is able to retrieve it, the leg is cracked in half. This motivates him to uncover the reason for the interest in his junk leg, which leads to an adventure en dangering his life. He solves not only the mystery behind the leg, but also a local jewel robbery that led to the death of the jeweller, a friend of Hen ry's. All ends well, as a reward from the jeweller's family goes to Henry, and his father comes back home. This dawdling and sketchy story is further weighed down by numerous Briticisms such as ``het-up,'' ``frothe and bub ble,'' ``skiver,'' and ``daft.'' Young American readers will have a hard time becoming involved in this stretched- out and transparent adventure-mys tery. Jack Forman, Mesa Col . Lib . , San Diego
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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