Jackson Greene is riding high. He is officially retired from conning, so Principal Kelsey is (mostly) off his back. His friends have great new projects of their own. And as he's been hanging out a lot with Gaby de la Cruz, he thinks maybe, just maybe, they'll soon have their first kiss.
Then Jackson receives a link to a faked security video that seems to show him and the rest of Gang Greene flooding the school gym. The thugs behind the video threaten to pass it to the principal -- unless Jackson steals an advance copy of the school's toughest exam.
So Gang Greene reunites for their biggest job yet. To get the test and clear their names, they'll have to outrun the school's security cameras, outwit a nosy member of the Honor Board, and outmaneuver the blackmailers while setting a trap for them in turn. And as they execute another exciting caper full of twists and turns, they'll prove that sometimes it takes a thief to catch a cheat.
Varian Johnson is the author of several novels for children and young adults, including The Parker Inheritance
, for which he won a Coretta Scott King Honor award; The Great Greene Heist
, which was an ALA Notable Children's Book, a Kirkus Reviews
Best Book of 2014, and a Texas Library Association Lone Star List selection; and To Catch a Cheat
, another Jackson Greene adventure and a Kids' Indie Next List pick. He lives with his family near Austin, Texas. You can find him online at varianjohnson.com.
- ! "From To Catch a Cheat:
\t\"Tell me, where were you on Saturday
\tJackson sat down on the other side of the principal's desk. \"Saturday?
Mr. James said the prank happened on Sunday.\"
\t\"Mr. James should focus on
security, not plumbing,\" Dr. Kelsey replied. \"No, given the amount of damage,
we suspect that the toilets were clogged on Saturday evening, after the boys' basketball
practice. The faucets were turned on as well. So I'll ask again--where were you
on Saturday between five and eight o'clock?\"
\t\"At the library. Studying.\"
Jackson focused on Dr. Kelsey's nose. He told himself not to blink, not to hesitate.
\"My dad dropped me off. I checked out books and everything.\"
else see you there?\"
\t\"I don't know. Maybe.\"
\t\"Then you don't have an
\t\"Dr. Kelsey, I promise--I did not pull this prank.\"
grinned. No. He smirked. \"That's fine. You don't have to talk. I'm sure
I can eventually convince Charlie de la Cruz to speak up. Or maybe I'll chat with
Hashemi Larijani. Or Charlie's new best friend, Bradley Boardman. It's funny how
students start talking once you take away some of their perks.\"
have anything to do with this.\"
\t\"And you do?\" Dr. Kelsey's face stiffened.
\"If you don't confess now, you're looking at a two-week suspension, plus you'll
be responsible for repairing all the damage to the gym and hallway floors.\"
straightened his tie. This was pointless. As far as Dr. Kelsey was concerned, he
was guilty. He was sure the principal would march him in front of the Honor Board
today if he could. And Jackson couldn't tell him what he'd actually been doing Saturday
night -- not without getting Gaby in trouble too.
\tIt was time to bring in
the big guns.
\t\"Can I use the phone?\" Jackson asked, already sliding forward
in his chair. \"I need to call my dad.\""