Flush is an amazing book, the second book in the four book series by Carl Hiaasen. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and went on to read the other two books, Scat and Chomp, which I will have reviews of soon. Please go read this book, you won't regret it!
Summary: "Dad's in Jail?" Noah Underwood's summer starts off horribly, and you know that when he spends Father's day visiting his dad in the local lockup. Noah's dad is caught setting fire to the Coral Queen an illegal casino boat (because it's too far inland), which supposedly is dumping out all the sewage from the boat's bathrooms into the harbor (gross!). Noah decides to investigate the case, to try to prove his dad is right about everything and arrest Dusty Muleman, owner of the Coral Queen. Along the way he meets Jasper Jr., Dusty's son, and the kid bullying him to make him stop. Then he meets Shelly, a bartender for the Coral Queen. With her help, the kids devise a plan to sink the ship for good. Along the way, they encounter runaway prisoners, a man with a gun, and manage to survive being stranded out in the middle of the ocean with no food or water. What will they have to do to stop the Coral Queen from it's illegal ways. Simple "Flush and Flush often"
What I liked: About 11/12 of the book. This book was very humorous, exciting, adventurous, and mysterious. I especially enjoyed the fact that Noah's dad is in jail at the start of the plot, which only adds to the emotional aspect of the book as well as the plot because Noah has to do pretty dangerous things most adults wouldn't do by himself alone. My favorite scene was probably the light bulb moment when they had an idea about how to stop them, I won't spoil it all, which in the in end kind of worked, but didn't really...
What I didn't like: About 1/12 of the book ;). But seriously, there wasn't much to not like about this book. Probably the only thing I would've like is to have some of the gangster-aspect of the book removed (but only a little!). I mean, kids with cigarettes? Dads in jail? I feel like if this is targeted toward a middle grade audience, it might have been a bit too much, not for the higher tween group, but the 8 and nine year olds' (although now, I can kinda see my little sister, whose nine, enjoying this book)
Rating on 'The Scale'- A solid 8.5
Why? This book is sure to go on to receive some amazing awards. But while it was amazing, in a way, I felt like it wasn't strong enough (I'm not sure you can describe books like that!). It's kind of like if you go to a band contest and play your song perfectly. Every not is right, you're all robot-in-sync. But you played 'Mary had a little lamb'. Honestly, if this book explored a deeper meaning, that'd be better even if it made a few mistake. Don't get me wrong, this had a lot of very intense moments, but I felt like it could've gone a notch deeper into the plot.
Related books: Hoot, Chmp, Scat (Carl hiaasen); Belly Up, Poached- Stuart Gibbs; Any mystery novel with animals