Friday, 20 January 2023

Chasing The Falconers - Gordon Korman - On The Run Book 1

Chasing The Falconers
On The Run Book 1
Gordon Korman
ISBN 9780439651363
eISBN 9780545632010
ASIN B00CFT6LD4


Mid Last year, in the summer of 2022, Korman published his 100th book. Yes you read that correctly, his hundredth book. My introduction to Korman’s works was the 39 Clues back in 2009. Since then I have read over 20 of his books. Barely a drop in the buck, but with each one I read I am entertained and often challenged. My son often reads these books to me or with me. I picked up this to read on my Christmas vacation. 

My son and I started reading Gordon Korman books together a few years ago, when he was given one as an end of year gift by his teacher. She gave the whole class the same Scholastic edition and wrote a note to each student in their copy of the book. Prior to that I had a read a few of his contributions to the 39 Clues series and had enjoyed them. My son and I have mostly been reading his more recent titles. I have always been hesitant to pick up the first in this series because it is part of a series. I was not sure I was that committed. And I had been greatly enjoying his current releases. After reading book 1 I am hooked and know I will be reading all the volumes in this series in short order. The series consists of:

Chasing the Falconers 
The Fugitive Factor 
Now You See Them, Now You Don't 
The Stowaway Solution 
Public Enemies 
Hunting the Hunter 

The description of this volume is:

“Aiden and Meg Falconer are their parents' only hope. The Falconers are facing life in prison - unless Aiden and Meg can follow a trail of clues to prove their innocence. The problem? They're trapped in a juvenile detention center. Until they escape one night - and find themselves on the run, both from the authorities and from a sinister attacker who has his own reason to stop them. The Falconers must use their wits to make it across the country - with plenty of tests along the way.”

Unlike many of Korman’s books the chapters do not have titles. The premise of the series, at least from the first volume reminds me of Conspiracy 365 January by Gabrielle Lord, also from scholastic but published 5 years after this series. At the end of the volume is no preview of the next instalment, but all 6 volumes published in just over a year. The story starts slow but with each chapter the pace picks up and once the action starts it does not let up. 

Aiden and Meg are at a juvenile corrections facility. Not because they have been convicted of anything, but because their parents have and they are the most notorious criminals in recent history. No matter where the kids were fostered problems arose. So this was the solution. When an unforeseen event happens and the two escape. They are now on the run, and their goal is to find a way to prove that their parents are innocent. They soon team up with another escapee and though they were not criminals when they were incarcerated they are racking up the list of crimes while on the run. They hop a train, steal a car, syphon gas, break and enter, and much more. But Part of it is that they are desperate to find the one person who can clear their parent’s names.  

The story in this one is a little darker than many of Korman’s offerings. The pace is excellent. The characters as always are masterfully written. It is a story young readers will latch onto and be desperate to know what happens next! Another excellent read from Korman’s skilful pen!

Books by Gordon Korman:
MacDonald Hall Series:
Beware the Fish!  (1980)
The Wizzle War (1982)
         (formerly The War With Mr. Wizzle)
The Zucchini Warriors (1988)
Light’s Camera, Disaster (1991)
          (aka Macdonald Hall Goes Hollywood)
The Jokes on Us (1995)
          (formerly Something Fishy at Macdonald Hall)

Bugs Potter Series:
Who is Bugs Potter? (1980)
Bugs Potter LIVE at Nickaninny (1983)

Jeremy Bloom Series:
The D−Poems of Jeremy Bloom (1992)
The Last-Place Sports Poems of Jeremy Bloom (1996)

Monday Night Football Series:
The Quarterback Exchange (1997)
Running Back Conversion (1997)
Super Bowl Switch (1997)
Heavy Artillery (1997)
Ultimate Scoring Machine (1998)
NFL Rules! Bloopers, Pranks, Upsets, and Touchdowns (1998)

Masterminds Series:
Masterminds (2015)
Masterminds: Criminal Destiny (2016)
Masterminds: Payback (2017)

Slapshots Series:
The Stars From Mars (1999)
All-Mars All-Stars/The Dream Team (1999)
The Face-off Phony (2000)
Cup Crazy (2000)
Ouch I got slapped (2023)
4-in-1 Slapshots: The Complete Collection (2008)

Nose Pickers Series:
Nose Pickers from Outer Space! (1999)
Planet of the Nose Pickers (2000)
Your Mummy Is a Nose Picker (2000)
Invasion of the Nose Pickers (2001)
4-in-1 The Ultimate Nose-Picker Collection (2006)

Island Series:
Shipwreck (2001)
Survival (2001)
Escape (2001)
3-in-1 Island Trilogy Collection (2006)

Son of the Mob Series:
Son of the Mob (2002)
Son of the Mob 2: Hollywood Hustle (2004)

Everest Series:
The Contest (2002)
The Climb (2002)
The Summit (2002)
Everest Trilogy Box Set (2002)

Dive Series:
The Discovery (2003)
The Deep (2003)
The Danger (2003)

On the Run Series:
The Fugitive Factor (2005)
Now You See Them, Now You Don't (2005)
The Stowaway Solution (2005)
Public Enemies (2005)
Hunting the Hunter (2006)

Kidnapped Series:
The Abduction (2006)
The Search (2006)
The Rescue (2006)

Swindle Series:
Swindle (2008)
Zoobreak (2009)
Framed (2010)
Showoff (2012)
Hideout (2013)
Jackpot (2014)
Unleashed (2015)
Jingle (2016)

Titanic Series:
Unsinkable (2011)
Collision Course (2011)
S.O.S (2011)

The 39 Clues Series:
Vespers Rising (2011)
The Medusa Plot (2011)
Flashpoint (2014)

Hypnotists Series:
The Hypnotists (2013)
Memory Maze (2014)
The Dragonfly Effect (2015)

Ungifted Series:
Ungifted (2012)
Supergifted (2018)

Slacker Series:
Slacker (2016)
Level 13 (2019)
...

Non Series Books:
Our Man Weston (1982)
No Coins, Please (1984)
Don't Care High (1985)
Son of Interflux (1986)
A Semester in the Life of a Garbage Bag (1987)
Radio 5th Grade (1989)
Losing Joe's Place (1990)
The Twinkie Squad (1992)
The Toilet Paper Tigers (1993)
Why Did the Underwear Cross the Road (1994)
The Chicken Doesn't Skate (1996)
The Sixth Grade Nickname Game (1998)
No More Dead Dogs (2000)
Maxx Comedy: The Funniest Kid in America (2003)
Jake, Reinvented (2003)
Born To Rock (2006)
Schooled (2007)
Pop (2009)
Slacker (2016)
Restart (2017)
Notorious (2019)
War Stories (2020)
Game On (contains The Chicken Doesn’t Skate and The Toilet Paper Tigers (2021)
Unplugged (2021)
Linked (2021)
The Fort (2022)
The Super Teacher Project (2023)
Mixed Up (2023)








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