MY LIFE AS A NINJA
Author: Janet Tashjian
Release Date: April 11, 2017
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
Formats: Hardcover, eBook
Find it: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, Goodreads
Book 6 in the bestselling My Life series!
Derek Fallon has expanded his taste in cartoons to the world of manga and anime. Together with his friends Carly, Matt, and Umberto, Derek has fun learning about all the cool aspects of ninja culture. When someone starts vandalizing their school with graffiti of a mischievous troll-like figure, these ninjas-in-training are convinced they'll be able to crack the case. But it turns out that being a ninja is a lot more work than they thought, and this adventure brings about new opportunities for Derek to embarrass himself. For once, can he be the hero that saves the day?
A Christy Ottaviano Book
Excerpt #1, p. 49-52
Matt, Umberto, and I tell our parents we’re meeting at the panini place near the school to work on a project. We DO eat dinner there, but as soon as we’re done, we head to the school parking lot to try to catch the vandal in the act.
“What are the chances the guy comes back to the same place?” Matt asks. “If I were him, I’d find a new spot to draw a Minotaur.”
Umberto shakes his head. “He’ll want to finish his drawing.” He pulls out the notebook strapped to the back of his wheelchair. He flips through it until he finds the page he’s looking for—a perfect duplicate of the Minotaur on the fence.
“Wait . . . YOU didn’t draw the mural, did you?” I ask.
“Of course not!” Umberto says. “I just wanted to see if I could.”
I examine the drawing, which is almost identical to the original. I feel a twinge of envy that Umberto’s illustration skills have improved so much. He really is a much better cartoonist than I am.
He’s also got this whole silence thing down. As we hide behind the bike rack, he has to tell Matt and me to keep it down several times. “Stop being so loud,” he says. “It’s very un-ninja.”
But it’s dark and we have the school parking lot to ourselves, so Matt and I improvise a hockey game with a flat rock. We take turns kicking it across the cement until Umberto waves his arms, wildly pointing to a car slowing down.
“Maybe one of our parents should’ve come with us,” I whisper. “Maybe this mission is more dangerous than we thought.” I reach into my pocket and take out my phone, just in case.
The car continues to head toward us, slowly.
“This could be the vandal,” Matt whispers.
The sedan pulls over a few yards away from where we’re hiding. I feel my pulse quicken; we’re about to see who’s behind this.
For several minutes, none of us move. Whoever’s in the car remains as quiet as we are.
Suddenly, the door flies open and a man races toward us.
Janet Tashjian is a middle-grade and young adult novelist who’s been writing books for children for fifteen years. Her first novel Tru Confessions was made into a critically acclaimed Disney TV movie starring Clara Bryant and Shia LaBeouf. The Gospel According to Larry is a cult favorite and Fault Line is taught in many middle and high schools. Her novels My Life As a Book, My Life As a Stuntboy, and My Life As a Cartoonist are all illustrated by her teenage son, Jake. Their collaboration continues with My Life As a Ninja coming April of 2017.
Janet lives with her family in Los Angeles, enjoying her respite from the long Boston winters. When she isn’t writing, she’s rewriting. Learn more about her and all her books at JanetTashjian.com!
Janet has been doing school visits for fifteen years; you can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
(3) Winners will receive a finished copy of MY LIFE AS A NINJA - US Only!
Ends on April 25th at Midnight EST!
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