HootBook - 2002
Everybody loves Mother Paula's pancakes. Everybody, that is, except the colony of cute but endangered owls that live on the building site of the new restaurant. Can the awkward new kid and his feral friend prank the pancake people out of town? Or is the owls' fate cemented in pancake batter?
"A wonderful tour de-force." -- The Boston Globe
"A rollicking, righteous story." -- The Miami Herald
"Yes, it is a hoot."-- The Washington Post
From the Hardcover edition.
From Library Staff
A running shoeless boy, burrowing owls and a mystery all greet Roy when he moves to Florida. Where is the boy running to… or from? Lovers of animals, the environment and wacky tales will love this thoughtful adventure! Ages 10 and up.
LPL_NathanB Jan 07, 2017
I read this book in advance of it being assigned to my 6th grade students. Going into it knowing nothing about the story, I was pleasantly surprised at how quickly I was propelled through the pages. Among the features of this book that I liked the most were: the discussion of morality (doing th... Read More »
From the critics
AgeAdd Age Suitability
green_frog_1926 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 90 and 1
indigo_giraffe_86 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 98 and 99
Violet_Jellyfish_30 thinks this title is suitable for 8 years and over
blue_turtle_77 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 10 and 13
violet_monkey_760 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over
navy_butterfly_66 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 11 and 11
SummaryAdd a Summary
One day when Roy was riding a school bus and when he looked out through the window, he saw a boy running without shoes. He was trying to find out who the boy was. With the help of Beatrice ( she going to the same school as Roy...) Roy found out who was the running boy was and saved some cute, little animals.
“Roy remembered the time he and his father had a talk about fighting. 'It's important to stand up for what's right,' Mr. Eberhardt had said, 'but sometimes there's a fine line between courage and stupidity.”
― Carl Hiaasen
Roy Eberhardt just moved to Florida in the town Coconut Cove, and is being bullied by Dana Matherson. One day on the bus, Roy sees a boy running away from the bus barefoot. He tries to get off the bus, but his bully Dana grabs him by the throat. Roy gets free by breaking Dana's nose, but cannot catch the running boy and is hit in the head with a golf ball. Roy was sent to the vice-principal's office and the vice-principal suspends Roy from the bus for two weeks and tells him to write an apology letter to Dana. He tries to call a truce with Dana, but Dana refuses.
Mother Paula's All-American Pancake House Corporation intends to build a pancake house in Coconut Cove. The bulldozers have already been parked on the construction site,but work is delayed over and over again because of bizarre but effective acts of vandalism that occur in the night. Roy learns this is the work of the running boy he only knows as "Mullet Fingers", whom he befriends (his step-sister happens to be Beatrice Leep). His motives for the vandalism are honorable; Mullet Fingers wants to save the endangered burrowing owls that live on the site from being killed when the bulldozing begins.
The construction foreman on the site denies the existence of the owls. Roy attempts to help Mullet Fingers prove the owls are on the site, including loaning him a digital camera. In his current events presentation, Roy tells his history class about the owls and how the pancake company will bury them, and encourages them to join him in protesting at the ground breaking the next day.
Roy and Beatrice and other students attend the ground breaking, where they expose the company's greed and dishonesty to the entire town. The young people succeed in exposing the illegal acts of those in power, including illegally removing an environmental impact statement from the official file. They save the birds and their habitat. The president of Mother Paula's All-American Pancake House blames former employees and promises to preserve the property as an owl sanctuary.
Mullet Fingers, in an effort to escape his vile family situation, climbs out of a bathroom window and is accidentally mistaken for a burglar. When Mullet Fingers' mother spitefully tells the police that he stole a ring from her, he is sent to the same juvenile detention center as Dana. Mullet Fingers escapes the jail using Dana as a distraction. At the end, Roy discovers that Mullet Finger’s real name is Napoleon Bridger.
Coarse Language: just a warrning to parents of younger children not for below the age of 9