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Book Review

Publisher's Note:

It's his senior year and Will Shea has conned his way into one of the country's most elite prep schools. But he soon runs into Andrea, a fellow con-artist. With the school not big enough for the both of them, they make a bet that whoever can con Brandt Rush, the richest, most privileged student in the school out of $50K, gets to stay at the school. Will starts setting up his con (an online poker scam) with his uncle who's one of the best grifters in the business, but also with the unwanted help of his father. The plot thickens as Will starts falling for fellow student Gatsby, and some of Will's lies start to catch up with him. In this twisty tale of scams, secrets, lies and deception, it hard to figure out who's conning who…

Con Academy

by Joe Schreiber

Overall Book Review:

Hacking Harvard meets Theodore Boone: Kid Lawyer in this book about scams, cons, and making it to the top. I adore books that involve smart kids. It’s so much fun to read a book that has kids doing things you typically only think adults capable of. Well, in this book, with a little help from adults, and a lot of scheming on his own part, Will Shea sets up and pulls off many things that I never would have thought possible. After reading Con Academy though, I can only imagine seeing the things that happen in this book on the National News.

If you are a kid (or an adult searching for a book for your child) looking for a good read that is relatively low in content, then listen up (and see below content detail)! This book might be just what you need to get you out of a reading slump. It’s a little bit of mystery, and a whole lot of drama, but I was never bored with it–far from it. I had a fine time trying to decide whether or not to believe the elaborate stories Will Shea told his classmates, and when he finally started to fit in and make friends, it was interesting to see how that worked out for him.

All in all, this book is a keeper. Joe Schreiber has the type of writing that will appeal to a vast age group. I know I would have loved this book when I was young, and now, at 21 I liked it just as well!

Review of an Advance Reader Copy provided by the publisher

Content Analysis:

Profanity/Language:  5 mild obscenities.

Violence/Gore:  A minor reports his parents died; a bomb is mentioned to have been dropped on a populated area, people died from the radiation; a minor hires a hitman to injure a classmate (the character is slammed into a wall); death threats are made; a character destroys classmate’s instrument to retaliate against her; a character smacks a classmate; a man physically threatens a minor, tries to punch him; a minor is mentioned to have been kidnapped and her wrists tied; a minor girl is shot and injured, some blood is mentioned to be splattered; verbal threats are made.

Sex/Nudity:  Minors kiss briefly twice; a minor girl gives a boy she likes a peck on the cheek.

Mature Subject Matter:

Underage drinking, gambling, hazing, death.

Alcohol / Drug Use:

A man drinks whiskey; a man’s car smells of smoke, he is said to be smoking a cigarette; minors drink in secret at school in several instances; adults are mentioned to chain smoke.

Overall Book Rating

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About the Reviewer

Books and reading have always been an important part of my life. When I was very young, my grandma was the library director at our local public library. Years later, after she had retired, I became a librarian at the same library and worked there for several years before taking a part-time job at a local coffee shop, which gives me more time to do what I love, to read and to review books! A few of my favorite authors are Aimee Bender, Diane Chamberlain, and Curtis Sittenfeld however, I will read almost any book I come across! In my spare time you can find me reading (of course), volunteering at a wildlife animal rehab, or hanging out with my two house rabbits.