Surrounded by Sharks

by Michael Northrop

Scholastic Inc.
July 2016

Ages 10 – 13 . Grades 5 – 8

Library of Congress: 2013045351

Lexile measure: HL600L

DRA: 60

Guided Reading: W



He couldn't sleep. That's how it all started.

When Davey wakes, just as the sun is rising, he can't wait to slip out of the crammed hotel room he's sharing with his family. Leave it to his parents and kid brother to waste an entire day of vacation sleeping in! Davey heads straight for the beach, book and glasses in hand, not bothering to leave a note. As the sparkling ocean entices him, he decides to test the water, never mind that No Swimming sign. But as the waves pull him farther from shore, Davey finds himself surrounded by water -- and something else, too. Something circling below the surface, watching, waiting. It's just a matter of time...

This adventure by New York Times bestselling author Michael Northrop will make readers think twice before taking a dip in the water.
Michael Northrop

Michael Northrop is the New York Times bestselling author of the middle-grade adventure series TombQuest. He is also the author of On Thin Ice; Trapped, an Indie Next List selection; Plunked, a New York Public Library 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing selection and an NPR Backseat Book Club pick; and other titles. An editor at Sports Illustrated Kids for many years, he now writes full-time from his home in New York City. Learn more at


  • Praise for Surrounded by Sharks:

    "This story strikes a balance of suspense and action... For reluctant readers and fans of survival stories." -- School Library Journal

    Praise for TombQuest:

    "Northrop balances pathos and action effectively to engage readers. Funny and smart." -- Kirkus Reviews

    "The plot moves quickly and will appeal to reluctant readers looking for adventure [and] danger." -- School Library Journal


--- - ! 'Panic turned to desperation and Davey turned that into effort. He was cranking out more effort than he ever had. Swimming had been a mistake -- this whole thing had been a mistake. But here he was, and swimming was all he had now. He just needed to try harder, to get back to where his feet could touch.

But desperation is a fast-burning fuel. His muscles ached as he threw them forward. His lungs screamed for more oxygen. His rhythm fell apart. He turned his head to the side to breathe, but he got greedy. He was still sucking in air as his head turned back down. He sucked in bitter saltwater and coughed face down in the sea. More water slipped in. He spit out as much as he could and kept going.

He was no quitter. He never had been. He could read an entire book in one sitting. A lot of people have probably done that, but for Davey, the book might be 400 pages and the sitting six hours. He''d won races in gym by being kind of fast for longer than his classmates could be really fast. And then there was this: Davey was pretty sure that if he stopped trying now, he would die. Keep trying or die.'