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Children's Fiction Mysteries & Detective Stories


by (author) Gordon Korman

Scholastic Canada Ltd
Initial publish date
Feb 2020
Mysteries & Detective Stories, Friendship, Law & Crime
Recommended Age
9 to 12
Recommended Grade
4 to 7
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Feb 2020
    List Price
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Mar 2020
    List Price
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Jan 2021
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Where to buy it


A new standalone middle-grade novel from Gordon Korman, set (partly) in Canada!


Keenan is bored. He is recovering from tuberculosis, acquired while overseas with his mom. Now he’s stuck sitting in a lawn chair at his dad’s place on Centerlight, Michigan, an island of about 7000 residents in the St. Clair River which is divided in two by the Canada/US border.


When Keenan meets a girl his age, ZeeBee, who lives on the Canadian side of the border, his life becomes anything but boring. ZeeBee is full of conspiracy theories. Paramount among her theories is that notorious gangster Tommy-Gun Ferguson (original owner of the house she now lives in) buried millions in treasure on the island during the Prohibition era. She’s also convinced her recently deceased dog Barney was murdered — apparently he was a notorious terror and not a favourite among the locals.


Keenan isn’t convinced by either of these theories, but soon some clues turn up that even he can’t ignore. Will the pair of them find the treasure and solve the mystery of what happened to Barney . . . or will the dog-murdering criminals find them first?


Told in Gordon’s now classic multi-voice style, his new novel combines mystery, comedy, and a story of new friendships.

About the author


Gordon Korman
est né à Montréal et a grandi dans la région de Toronto. Il a signé son
premier contrat chez Scholastic à l'âge de 14 ans, avec son premier livre
Deux farceurs au collège.
Il est maintenant l'auteur de plus de 60 livres, dont beaucoup lui ont valu
de nombreuses récompenses. Gordon habite dans la ville de New York.


Gordon Korman is the #1 bestselling author of three books in The 39 Clues series as well as eight books in his Swindle series: Swindle, Zoobreak, Framed, Showoff, Hideout, Jackpot, Unleashed, and Jingle. His other books include This Can't Be Happening at Macdonald Hall! (published when he was 14); The Toilet Paper Tigers; Radio Fifth Grade; Slacker; Restart; Whatshisface; Level 13; the trilogies Island, Everest, Dive, Kidnapped, and Titanic; and the series The Hypnotists and On the Run. Gordon grew up in Thornhill, Ontario and he lives in New York with his family. Visit him online at

Gordon Korman's profile page


  • Winner, Diamond Willow Award (Saskatchewan Young Readers' Choice)
  • Commended, Best Books for Kids and Teens, Canadian Children's Book Centre, Starred Selection

Editorial Reviews

Praise for Notorious:

“Zarabeth’s cross-border observations wryly assert Canadian cultural identity. She and Keenan . . . alternate narration and are good company . . . vivid secondary characters commit spontaneous acts of hilarious mayhem. Chalk up another treat for Korman fans.” — Kirkus Reviews

“Korman brings his usual humor and heart to this well-plotted mystery . . . that sensitively explores themes of friendship and family and offers realistically flawed, believable characters.” — Publishers Weekly

“Korman sketches characters with swift, sure strokes and places them in a distinctive setting... this a book that Korman fans won't want to miss.” — Booklist

“The fast-moving, action-packed plot makes this a great choice for reluctant readers... A diverting read full of suspense and historical intrigue.” — School Library Journal

“Korman is reliably at the head of the pack in middle-grade quirkiness, and his fans will be well pleased with this fresh title” — Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books


Praise for Gordon Korman:

"Chapters rotate narration . . . giving varied perspectives to this humorous classroom underdog story that championsteamwork, kindness, and hidden sparks. " (The Unteachables) — Publishers Weekly

"Korman spins a narrative of redemption and belief in exceeding self-expectations. " (The Unteachables) — Kirkus Reviews

"Humorous, relatable, and full of heart, Korman's gift for understanding the middle school mind is on full display." (Supergifted) — School Library Journal

"Managing a large cast of characters with ease, Korman creates a comedy of compounded errors leading to a public disaster and, strangely enough, a happy ending." (Supergifted) — Booklist

"Readers will be able to see themselves in the well-drawn characters that populate this quirky, funny, and relatable book." (Slacker) — Quill and Quire

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