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Scat

Cover of Scat

Scat

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From Newbery Honoree Carl Hiaasen comes this New York Times bestseller set in Florida's Everglades in which an eccentric eco-avenger, a stuffed rat named Chelsea, a wannabe Texas oilman, a singing substitute teacher, and a ticked-off panther can't stop two kids on a mission to find their missing teacher!

Bunny Starch, the most feared biology teacher ever, is missing. She disappeared after a school field trip to Black Vine Swamp. And, to be honest, the kids in her class are relieved.

But when the principal tries to tell the students that Mrs. Starch has been called away on a "family emergency," Nick and Marta just don't buy it. No, they figure the class delinquent, Smoke, has something to do with her disappearance.

And he does! But not in the way they think. There's a lot more going on in Black Vine Swamp than any one player in this twisted tale can see. It's all about to hit the fan, and when it does, the bad guys better scat.

"Ingenious . . . Scat won't disappoint Hiaasenphiles of any age." —The New York Times

"Woohoo! It's time for another trip to Florida—screwy, gorgeous Florida, with its swamps and scammers and strange creatures (two- and four-legged). Our guide, of course, is Carl Hiaasen." —DenverPost.com
From the Hardcover edition.
From Newbery Honoree Carl Hiaasen comes this New York Times bestseller set in Florida's Everglades in which an eccentric eco-avenger, a stuffed rat named Chelsea, a wannabe Texas oilman, a singing substitute teacher, and a ticked-off panther can't stop two kids on a mission to find their missing teacher!

Bunny Starch, the most feared biology teacher ever, is missing. She disappeared after a school field trip to Black Vine Swamp. And, to be honest, the kids in her class are relieved.

But when the principal tries to tell the students that Mrs. Starch has been called away on a "family emergency," Nick and Marta just don't buy it. No, they figure the class delinquent, Smoke, has something to do with her disappearance.

And he does! But not in the way they think. There's a lot more going on in Black Vine Swamp than any one player in this twisted tale can see. It's all about to hit the fan, and when it does, the bad guys better scat.

"Ingenious . . . Scat won't disappoint Hiaasenphiles of any age." —The New York Times

"Woohoo! It's time for another trip to Florida—screwy, gorgeous Florida, with its swamps and scammers and strange creatures (two- and four-legged). Our guide, of course, is Carl Hiaasen." —DenverPost.com
From the Hardcover edition.
Available formats-
  • Kindle Book
  • OverDrive Read
  • EPUB eBook
  • PDF eBook
Languages:-
Copies-
  • Available:
    1
  • Library copies:
    2
Levels-
  • ATOS:
    5.5
  • Lexile:
    810
  • Interest Level:
    MG
  • Text Difficulty:
    3 - 4

Recommended for you


 
Awards-
Excerpts-
  • From the book

    The day before Mrs. Starch vanished, her third-period biology students trudged silently, as always, into the classroom. Their expressions reflected the usual mix of dread and melancholy, for Mrs. Starch was the most feared teacher at the Truman School.When the bell rang, she unfolded stiffly, like a crane, and rose to her full height of nearly six feet. In one hand she twirled a sharpened Ticonderoga No. 2 pencil, a sure sign of trouble to come.

    Nick glanced across the aisle at Marta Gonzalez. Her brown eyes were locked on Mrs. Starch, and her thin elbows were planted like fence posts, pinning her biology book open to Chapter 8. Nick had left his own textbook in his locker, and his palms were sweating.

    "Good morning, people," said Mrs. Starch, in a tone so mild that it was chilling. "Who's prepared to tell me about the Calvin cycle?"

    Only one hand rose. It belonged to Graham, who always claimed to know the answers but never did. Mrs. Starch hadn't called on him since the first week of class.

    "The Calvin cycle," she repeated. "Anybody?"

    Marta looked as if she might throw up again. The last time that had happened, Mrs. Starch had barely waited until the floor was mopped before instructing Marta to write a paper listing five major muscles used in the act of regurgitation.

    Nick and the other students had been blown away. What kind of teacher would punish a kid for puking?

    "By now," Mrs. Starch was saying, "the photosynthetic process should be familiar to all of you."

    Marta gulped hard, twice. She'd been having nightmares about Mrs. Starch, who wore her dyed blond hair piled to one side of her head, like a beach dune. Mrs. Starch's school wardrobe never varied: a polyester pants suit in one of four faded pastel colors, and drab brown flats. She painted heavy violet makeup on her eyelids, yet she made no effort to conceal an odd crimson mark on her chin. The mark was the shape of an anvil and the subject of wild speculation, but nobody had gotten up the nerve to ask Mrs. Starch about it.

    Marta's eyes flicked miserably toward Nick, then back to the teacher. Nick was fond of Marta, although he wasn't sure if he liked her enough to sacrifice himself to Mrs. Starch, who had begun to pace. She was scanning the class, selecting a victim.

    A droplet of perspiration glided like a spider down Nick's neck. If he worked up the courage to raise his hand, Mrs. Starch would pounce swiftly. Right away she'd see that he had forgotten his biology book, a crime that would be forgiven only if Nick was able to explain and then diagram the Calvin cycle, which was unlikely. Nick was still struggling to figure out the Krebs cycle from Chapter 7.

    "Plants, as we all know, are vital to human existence," said Mrs. Starch, on patrol. "And without the Calvin cycle, plants could not exist. Could not exist_._._."

    Graham was waving his arm and squirming like a puppy. The rest of the class prayed that Mrs. Starch would call on him, but she acted as if he were invisible. Abruptly she spun to a halt at the front of Marta's row.

    Marta sat rigidly in the second desk, behind a brainy girl named Libby who knew all about the Calvin cycle--all about everything--but seldom made a peep.

    "The chart on page 169," Mrs. Starch went on, "makes it all plain as day. It's an excellent illustration, and one that you are likely to encounter on a test. Quite likely_._._."

    Marta lowered her head, a tactical mistake. The movement, slight as it was, caught Mrs. Starch's attention.

    Nick sucked in a breath. His heart raced and his head buzzed, because he knew that it was now or never. Marta seemed to shrink under Mrs. Starch's...

About the Author-
  • CARL HIAASEN was born and raised in Florida. He writes a column for the Miami Herald and is the author of many bestselling novels including Bad Monkey, Star Island, and Nautre Girl.
    His books for younger readers include the Newbery Honor winner Hoot, as well as Flush, Scat, and Chomp. Skink—No Surrender was Hiaasen's first book for teens and features one of his most iconic characters, the reclusive ex-governor of Florida now known as Skink.
    You can read more about Hiaasen's work at carlhiaasen.com.
Reviews-
  • DOGO Books cburke - The name of my book is Scat by Carl Hiaasen. The story is based around a group of characters that all have their own secrets behind a mysterious fire that broke out in the woods while a school was on the field trip. A teacher goes missing while trying to find a little girls inhaler and hasn't been seen in days. Detectives find evidence of arson, and all eyes are wandering. A mysterious arson, a missing teacher, a juvenile student, and a greedy business company all have their secrets that have yet to come out. Two students, Nick and Marta, are the only ones who have the curiosity to piece it together. With them only being in seventh grade, it is hard to convince anyone. All the people in town are turning against each other, yet a culprit is hiding right under their noses. This book is truly amazing. It not only represents mystery well, but it's relatable dialogue and characters add onto the realistic fiction. The clues are given ever so subtly, and connections are cleverly imputed. It switches off between characters, almost telling different stories every other chapter. This gives you different background knowledge and curiosity involving every character as a suspect, instead of having a seemingly one sided story. I believe that this genre is realistic fiction because all the events that happen in it could happen in real life, but the characters are fiction. There is no sort of fake elements to the book, which makes it relatable and realistic. The characters are made up by the author, but the events are based around true life events. The characters are fiction, but the plot is far from fake. A school teacher disappearing, and the students trying to solve it, are things that can happen in real life and have most likely happened. People who would enjoy this book are fans of mystery. The book is based around a mysterious event, but it has a lot more to offer than just that. It has relatable characters, interesting dialogue, and most of the things that make realistic fiction great. Audiences who love relating to characters and plots that involve clues given ever so subtly are going to be more than impressed by what Scat has to offer. An example of an internal conflict would be with one of the characters Duane, or Smoke. He struggles to find his true self throughout the book, as people try to tell him who he should be. This internal struggle is shown throughout the story, as it comes up often. His grandmother wants him to be a gentleman, while his father isn't a big fan of that. Since Smoke lives alone with his father, he hasn't ever had the chance to find out who he truly is without someone telling him. This is an internal conflict because it is man v.s man, meaning he is against himself throughout the story. Although there are no external conflicts, the book is interesting in many different areas. Scat is a book that creates a relatable connection between the reader and the characters. Whether it is the struggle of being at home, being at school, or feeling alone, Scat has all the different types of struggles that readers from different backgrounds can enjoy.
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    Random House Children's Books
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