Friday 17 November 2023

No Coins, Please - Gordon Korman

No Coins, Please
Gordon Korman
ISBN 9780439961721

This is the 37th volume I have read from the masterful pen of Gordon Korman. Mid Last year, in 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. With every volume I read from Gordon Korman I am entertained and often challenged. My son often reads these books to me or with me. I am currently bouncing around several of his series and from his most recent to oldest books. This was the third standalone story written by Korman. Originally published in 1984, I believe there have been 14 editions of this book the last in 2005, but there does not appear to be an eBook edition which is a great pity.

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. After reading book 1 in the Bruno and Boots or MacDonald Hall series I was hooked and know I will be reading all the volumes that Korman has written. And maybe trying to track down some of the older editions before there were updated. 

The current description of this volume is:

“A zany cross-country tour where cash is king and the laughs are large in classic Korman style! Dennis and Rob find perfect summer jobs as counsellors on the JT Juniortours cross-country driving tour. Dennis is in heaven - he thinks he and his friend Rob have scored the perfect summer jobs. But Rob quickly points out what Dennis never factored in - the group of boys they're now completely responsible for. That includes Artie Geller - Donald Trump in a 10-year-old's body. Artie gives his counsellors the slip whenever possible to set up new business opportunities. Dennis and Rob soon learn they can't control Artie, and that they have to hide every one of his schemes from the tour boss to protect their own skins.Visions of beautiful female counsellors are replaced by visions of bankruptcy... and the FBI.”

The description on the back of the edition I tracked down was:

“How much trouble can six 11-year-old campers cause on a tour across the  U.S.A.? A Lot-especially when Artie Geller is one of them. He just can’t stop making money. From selling “attack jelly” on the streets of New York to opening the world’s most exclusive disco in Denver, Artie’s wacky ideas make big bucks. In fact, everybody things Artie’s a genius-except the FBA!”

The chapters in this volume are:

The Ambulance
Where’s Artie?
A Piece of America
A Day At The Races
The Power of Positive Parking
No Frills
The Denver Twist
A Little Difference of Opinion
Adventures of the Old Guy

Who would have thought that Canadian’s would have been the team constantly in trouble during the Juniortours. Often late, missing check-in’s, and with one member constantly disappearing. Artie says he goes nowhere and does nothing special. But if that is the case why does he keep going missing. 

This is another fantastic read from Gordon Korman. I could not put it down and devoured it in a single sitting, staying up too late. It was exciting to watch the group dynamics on team Ambulance and especially as Artie came out of his shell and drew the other guys into his plots. And to be honest the story ends in such a way they could have easily been another volume covering their time in LA, and the return trip to Montreal.

A great story about friendship, belonging and finding our place. Watching the 6 kids and 2 councillors as they grew through the adventure was great fun. The characters are wonderfully written. It is a great story guaranteed to entertain the young and the young at heart! It is another excellent read from Korman’s masterful pen! I can easily recommend this book and series!

Books by Gordon Korman:
MacDonald Hall Series:
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:

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)

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

Kidnapped Series:
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:
Son of Interflux (1986)
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)
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)

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